Working in the health care industry comes with a great amount of responsibility and often a great amount of risk. Regardless of the safeguards and protocols in place, accidents can happen, especially in the high-stress moments of dealing with emergencies.
Health care workers face many hazards each day as part of their job. Danger can come from the instruments that they work with, the physical components of their job or even directly from the patients.
1. Sprains and strains
Health care workers have physically demanding jobs. Sprains and strains from overexertion are common injuries as they must lift, move and position patients who are often much larger than themselves. Repetitive use injuries from frequent bending, twisting and lifting can lead to everything from a minor sprain to severe back injuries.
2. Cuts and lacerations
Cuts, lacerations and needle sticks also occur in the health care field as using sharp instruments and needles is common practice. Lasting injuries may include nerve damage or even exposure to disease.
Violent attacks are unfortunately not a rare occurrence in the health care industry. Violent attacks may come from a distressed, agitated or confused patient or from a patient’s family member who is under extreme stress and not thinking clearly. Depending on the severity of the attack, workers may suffer cuts, bruises, swelling and even PTSD.
In addition to the risk of physical injuries that health care workers face every day, they are also regularly exposed to dangerous chemicals. Chemotherapy medications, radiation and even the strong cleaning supplies required can be hazardous and toxic to health care workers who must regularly be around them.