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Hampshire Accident And Injury Victims

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3 reasons working with patients can lead to serious injury

On Behalf of | Jun 14, 2024 | Work injuries |

Many workplace safety incidents in hospitals and similar medical environments specifically involve cases where people come into contact with dangerous objects or contract illness through pathogen exposure. However, in many cases, it is work with patients that puts people at the highest degree of risk.

Those seeking out care in a medical setting could potentially cause significant injuries to those providing support. What factors make patient care such a concern for healthcare providers?

Increasing patient weights

In 1990, the average man reported weighing 180 pounds, while the average woman claimed to weigh in at around 142 pounds. Both sexes have seen a noteworthy increase in average weight. Men now self-report an average weight of 200 pounds, while the average woman weight 162 pounds. That may not seem like much of a change, but the actual weight of many people is above what they self-report.

That increase in weight creates several concerns for those in healthcare environments. Nurses and other professionals could very easily throw out their backs if they attempt to lift a patient without assistance from a coworker or a special device. Regularly lifting slightly heavier patients can also worsen the chances of repetitive stress injuries.

Volatile behavior

One of the top-reported reasons for injuries among medical professionals is patient violence. Paramedics, nurses and others trying to provide medical support could end up hurt by the very people they want to help. Some patients have mental health issues or age-related challenges that make them unpredictable and potentially dangerous. Other times, the person may have had a bad reaction to a medication or a history of medical trauma that makes their behavior unpredictable. Additionally, those trying to avoid arrest or escape state custody could engage in inappropriate and dangerous behavior in a medical setting.

The need to rush

Patient care may also be responsible for a significant percentage of the slip-and-falls reported in medical environments. During an emergency where someone activates a call light or cries out in pain, professionals nearby may move as quickly as they can. They may set aside concerns for their own safety in the hopes of reaching the patient quickly. Someone could fall and develop a brain injury or break a bone in their eagerness to offer timely support to a patient in a moment of crisis.

Medical professionals hurt on the job may end up needing medical care themselves. Workers’ compensation coverage can help those worried about lost wages and treatment costs when hurt in a medical setting. Employees who are aware of job hazards may be better able to avoid them and may also feel more confident about requesting support if they get hurt at work despite their efforts to remain safe.