Nurses often pursue a medical career because they want to help others. However, who cares for nurses when they are hurt by work-related issues? Nurses are often so focused on caring for the patient that many times, they continue to do their job. Unfortunately, this level of dedication results in nurses not getting the care they need. When a nurse is hurt on the job, he or she is still able to contact one of the personal injury attorneys locally for help in filing a claim.
For example, let us say a nurse was helping a 300-pound patient to stand up. At that moment, the nurse felt something snap in her back. Since the patient always comes first, the nurse continued to work the rest of her shift, with increasing pain in her back. A couple of hours after her shift was over, her husband found her on the floor of the room – the nurse was unable to walk. Now she has to use a plate and several screws in her spine due to a herniated disc. In their work, nurses are exposed to a number of very specific risks that can cause injury. We will discuss some of the most common injuries below.
Skeletal muscle injuries
Nurses often suffer sprains to their back, wrist, shoulder, knees, and ankles when helping patients to stand up or in slip and fall accidents in the hospital. In some cases, they can suffer very serious injuries, such as damage to a vertebra, which will mean that they will not be able to return to work. And sadly, nurses are also often victims of injuries, which can cause damage to the musculoskeletal system. Not all patients are calm, especially those with some illness or injury that affects their mental state. During treatment, many patients can become frightened and react violently, not realizing that they can hurt the people who are trying to help and care for them.
Many patients are hospitalized with serious bacterial infections. Exposure to these bacteria can cause serious skin, blood, and respiratory infections to the nursing profession. While this is a risky profession, nurses have to use as many cautious measures available to them. However, accidents will happen to give the nurse an infection.
The needles are used to administer medicine, draw blood, or place catheters. If a nurse gets accidentally pricked with a non-sterile needle, he or she runs the risk of being exposed to any contagious disease that the patient may have. In that case, the nurse would have to be tested several times within a short period.
Exposure to Chemicals
Nurses are also exposed to many dangerous chemicals. Hospitals and workers should take more proactive actions to ensure they meet the following goals:
- Reduce exposure
- Protect patients, nurses, and doctors
- Participate in more governmental and institutional programming
Any one of those injuries can cost thousands of dollars in medical care.
The High Price of Nurse Injuries
The statistics show that the average workers ‘ compensation payments for nurses do not only include money lost from wages, as 25% of nurses have to take unpaid sick leave in order to recover. In addition, it also does not include cases in which the workers’ compensation claim is denied, which represents 50% of cases, and they have to pay for their own treatments. In fact, for hospitals, it is much more economically efficient to strive to prevent injuries to nurses rather than replace those who cannot return. If the sick person is injured and cannot return to practice, it can cost the hospital thousands of dollars to replace the nurse with another employee.
The Bottom Line
Considering the large amount of money that injuries cost each year, many of us wonder why there is no investment in training and equipment, which could prevent injuries and suffering. In any event, if you are a nurse and you have been personally injured while on the job, you may want to find one of the best personal injury attorneys to represent you in a legal claim for compensation. It only takes one phone call to start the process.