While you enjoy working as a nurse, you sometimes wonder if you may find yourself in a similar situation to some of your injured patients. What hazards should you know about your position?
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics dives into workplace dangers for registered nurses. Understand when your employer may bear responsibility for injuries you suffer on the clock.
The danger of standard duties
Nurses must exercise utmost caution while completing their standard duties. Common job tasks involve standing, walking, bending and stretching, any of which may lead to slipping and falling and fatigue. Lifting patients and helping them move may expose nurses to back injuries. Examples of dangerous substances those in the nursing industry often encounter include cleaning chemicals, used needles, radiation, drugs and diseases.
Those working in the nursing industry may also face violence at the hands of unruly patients, sometimes even animals. One unique fact about such violent episodes is nurses face a higher risk of this workplace hazard when compared to all occupations.
Ripple effects of injuries and illnesses
When nurses injure themselves, they may suffer tears, sprains and strains. Recovering from such harm may require roughly seven days of missed work. These injuries occur more commonly in the nursing sector than in other job roles.
The impact of age
Older nurses stand a higher risk of suffering workplace harm compared to nurses younger than 45. Further, nurses 45 and older may suffer more critical injuries than their younger coworkers, which may require more time off work to recover.
Have you suffered any of the above examples of occupational harm? Employers must take measures to keep nurses safe and compensate them for injuries and illnesses that qualify for workers’ comp.