Heavy lifting a frequent cause of injury among nurses

When you work as a nurse in New York, you face a high risk of experiencing a work-related injury or illness. Many such injuries result from heavy lifting and the moving of immobile patients. Many lifting-related injuries in health care are also preventable.

According to Health Leaders Media, there are about 75 lifting-related injuries for every 10,000 health care workers currently working full-time in American hospitals. As aging populations grow and the number of patients lacking mobility does, too, many health care providers are looking for ways to decrease injuries among staff members.

Lift-assistance equipment

Research shows that one of the most effective ways of reducing lifting-related injuries among nurses is for hospitals and other health care employers to invest in lift-assistance equipment. Lift-assistance equipment is expensive, often costing between about $6,000 and $16,000, depending on the type purchased. However, many safety advocates argue that the benefits far outweigh the cost of the equipment.

Benefits of lift-assistance equipment

When health care providers do choose to use lift-assistance equipment, it often does more than prevent worker injuries. It may, too, boost productivity, improve staff retention rates and lead to better patient care. It also benefits employers in that it minimizes time spent out of work. The use of this equipment may also decrease the amount of workers’ compensation claims employees file as a result of heavy lifting.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration urges health care employers to buy lift-assistance equipment to protect their workers and reduce injuries caused by heavy lifting. If you are considering changing jobs, ask what a potential employer does to help prevent lifting-related injuries.

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