Musculoskeletal injuries, or those that result when your muscular or skeletal systems suffer damage, are a significant source of injury for today’s health care workers. If you make your living as a nursing assistant, a hospital porter or in another role that involves heavy lifting and patient handling, it is critical that you understand and work to reduce the dangers that come with your line of work.
Per the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, work-related musculoskeletal injuries may lead to a host of additional problems. In 2017, these injuries occurred often enough among nurses alone that they caused them to miss 18,090 days of work.
Research shows that health care workers who suffer serious back and other injuries that cause pain and fatigue are often less productive than their peers in the workplace. When you suffer a serious musculoskeletal injury, you may become more susceptible to suffering similar injuries moving forward.
You may also become increasingly disenchanted with your profession. Statistics show that about 20% of nurses who vacate direct patient care positions leave because of the health risks that come with the job. When you have a musculoskeletal or lifting-related injury, it may also make you less attentive, which may have a direct impact on patient care.
Positions at high risk
While many health care workers face high risks of injuries to their muscular or skeletal systems, you may face a higher chance of this type of injury when you work in specific roles. Long-term care providers, acute care workers, home health care workers and physical therapists are some of the professions that bring with them high risks of these injuries. More about this subject is available on our webpage.