Nurses are at risk for on-the-job injuries
When asked about worker’s compensation, many people in New York may imagine outdoor workers. However, all types of workers can sustain injuries on the job. Even white-collar professionals may grapple with carpal tunnel syndrome. Nurses in particular are at risk for quite a few types of injuries (and so are people such as orderlies and nursing assistants who work in related professions).
Lifting and moving
Nurses do a lot of lifting and moving. A lot. Unfortunately, there simply is not a foolproof way for humans to always safely lift patients. Some training instructions may simply be downright dangerous; the commonly held strategy for lifters to keep their backs straight and bend their knees is actually risky.
Some hospitals and facilities do use machines to ease the burden on nurses. They remain in a small group, though, and nurses bear much more of their share at the majority of medical facilities. Their worker’s compensation claims may stem from sudden, one-time injuries or from the accumulated toll of lifting people as many as 12 times a day. Even those sudden, one-time injuries may not have happened if not for the strain already present by constant lifting and moving.
Needle stick injuries
Nurses often must give shots to patients, which means handling needles and the substances that go inside them. However, nurses sometimes stick themselves instead, even if a situation is relatively calm instead of frenetic and if the nurse is alert instead of fatigued. Patients can also get violent and stick nurses instead. The diseases that nurses might get from such a stick could include hepatitis and HIV. Moreover, nurses have to go through stressful procedures while they are trying to prevent these diseases from appearing. Some preventative regimes induce diarrhea and vomiting, and the emotional strain can be tremendous.
Fluids on the floor
Then there is the fact that all types of fluids such as blood, urine and vomit tend to find their way on the floor of a medical facility sooner or later. Even if an area is promptly mopped, a nurse who is in a hurry to work on a patient may not notice yellow caution signs-and falls. Slip-resistant shoes do help but are not foolproof.
Nurses can also fall on cords and equipment. They can even fall in poorly lit stairwells or on badly maintained hospital sidewalks.
In short, nurses in New York have a lot of potential health problems facing them. If they do get injured, worker’s compensation is one way to help them recover as much as possible. An attorney can help evaluate potential claims and make the climb less of an uphill process.