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According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), healthcare is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy. It is also an industry with one of the highest rates of work-related injuries and illnesses, as reported by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
Healthcare workers including doctors, nurses, medical assistants, nursing home workers, physical therapists, and paramedics all face many on-the-job hazards. These hazards may cause a wide range of injuries and illnesses, from musculoskeletal injuries to contraction of bloodborne diseases. At Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C., our dedicated workers’ compensation lawyers help healthcare workers recover compensation for all types of workplace injuries and illnesses.
Common Injuries Suffered by Healthcare Workers
Healthcare workers are part of a fast-paced industry. They often work long hours and are exposed to a variety of hazards daily. NIOSH reports that healthcare worker cases of nonfatal injury and illness are among the highest of any industry sector and include:
- Musculoskeletal injuries – Healthcare workers often handle patients and help to reposition them or lift them up. This type of strenuous physical activity can lead to musculoskeletal and other types of overexertion injuries, especially when dealing with obese patients or working for extended hours.
- Repetitive strain injuries – This type of injury can occur to any part of the body with repetitive tasks, high-intensity physical exertions and sustained awkward positions can all increase healthcare workers’ risk of repetitive strain injuries.
- Sharps injuries – Healthcare workers typically handle needles and other sharp instruments. These sharp objects can cause penetrating wounds and consequently, infections from bloodborne pathogens such as Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV).
- Slip and fall injuries – Slip, trip and falls are the most common types of workplace accidents, according to OSHA. These types of accidents frequently occur in the healthcare industry due to freshly waxed hospital floors, spilled liquids or items obstructing the walkway such as cords and medical equipment.
- Workplace violence – OSHA reports that healthcare workers experience, on average, four times more instances of workplace violence than any other industry. Workers in the mental health industry are at especially high risk of being assaulted by patients however, healthcare workers in any environment are at risk of physical assault by patients, co-workers, family members or criminal intruders.
Workers’ Compensation for Injured Healthcare Workers
Healthcare workers in Pennsylvania may be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits for their work-related injuries and illnesses. Under the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act, injured employees must give their employers notice of their workplace injury within 120 days. It is important to keep track of all medical records and time spent out of work so that all medical and wage loss benefits may be obtained.
The types and amount of workers’ compensation an injured healthcare worker may receive depends on the circumstances of their case, such as the type of injury sustained. In cases of severe injuries such as facial disfigurement or amputations, injured workers may also be entitled to specific loss benefits, which will continue for a set number of weeks depending on the nature and severity of the injury. Pennsylvania workers may also be eligible for additional compensation such as vocational rehabilitation benefits or damages through a third-party claim.
GET A FREE CONSULTATION WITH LARRY PITT
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. Help Healthcare Workers Obtain Compensation for their Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses
If you were injured or contracted an illness at work, contact an experienced Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyer at Larry Pitt & Associates, P.C. For more than 40 years, our knowledgeable and skilled attorneys have been helping hardworking employees, including healthcare workers, in Philadelphia and throughout the state obtain compensation for their work-related injuries and illnesses. Complete our online contact form or call us at 888-PITT-LAW for a free consultation. We proudly serve those in: