If you count yourself among the many people across Minnesota currently making a living in a hospital environment, you may have firsthand knowledge of the types of aches, pains and more serious injuries that often come with earning a living in this manner. Today’s hospitals are some of the most hazardous places in the nation to earn an income, with hospital workers facing a wide range of potential hazards every time they clock in for a shift.
Per the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, hospital workers suffer injury at nearly twice the rate of other workers within the private sector, with 6.8 injuries occurring for every 100 hospital workers nationwide. Just what is it about the hospital work environment that is so conducive to injuries?
Many hospital worker injuries result from similar causes and circumstances. The single-most commonly reported injury among hospital workers is overexertion, which often results from moving heavy patients and performing similar repetitive tasks that might involve bending over, lifting or reaching. While overexertion-related injuries account for nearly 50 percent of all hospital worker injuries, slip-and-fall injuries are also common, accounting for 25 percent of employee injuries.
Many hospital workers also suffer injury after coming in contact with objects, and this sometimes includes needlesticks. Violence, too, can lead to hospital worker injuries, and it can come from unruly patients or those under the influence of substances, among other causes. Safety advocates also believe that injuries sometimes result from the “do no harm” culture that exists in hospitals, noting that health care workers sometimes sacrifice their own safety to provide care for patients.
While this information about injuries common among hospital workers is educational in nature, it is not a substitute for legal advice.