If you work in health care, there is likely one thing you have worried about more than anything else this last year. Yet, there are many other ways to get ill or injured on the job, which continue to present as much of a risk as ever.
When you work in the health sector, you accept that long hours and irregular shift patterns are part of the deal. You and your colleagues may joke about how you are so tired you fall asleep on your feet. The problem is, your body has its limits. The more tired you are, the weaker your immune system and muscles become. On top of this, fatigue may lead you to make poor decisions that endanger you. Ones you might not make if you were well-rested.
Here are some of the common issues you could face if employed in health care:
- Back injuries: Lifting and moving patients, beds, and other equipment can take a toll on your back. Repeated day after day, it can lead to long-term injury.
- Falls and slips: Spending your day in PPE can have a dehydrating effect. Grabbing a glass of water is not so easy when you need to disinfect yourself every time. Therefore it can be tempting to carry on without drinking enough, which could cause you to faint. If you pass out and hit the ground hard, you could break something. Even if you stay hydrated and rested, it only takes a second to slip on a wet surface that a cleaner has mopped but not dried.
- Injuries from sharp tools or patients: Needles, scalpels and other equipment can also cause injury or severe infection. Patients can get violent too, and if there are sharp instruments around, they could do you serious harm, whether accidentally or on purpose.
Workers compensation insurance does not require you to be blame-free
One good thing about workers’ compensation insurance is that you can still claim even if you were partially to blame for an event that injured you. It prevents employers from working you into the ground then claiming it was your fault. That does not mean claiming will be straightforward. Employers and their insurers may use various tactics to deny or limit your claim if you do not have adequate support to present your case.