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OCCUPATIONAL HAZARDS Every day in America, 12 people go to work and never come home Every year in America, 3.3 million people will suffer a workplace injury from which they may never recover Disabling injuries costs American employers over one billion dollars a week in workers’ compensation costs Men are 13 times more likely to die at work than women
OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY & HEALTH ADMINISTRATION The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act) was passed to prevent workers from being killed or seriously harmed at work This law created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which sets and enforces protective workplace safety and health standards Under the OSH Act, employers have the responsibility to provide a safe workplace OSHA is responsible for the health and safety of 130 million workers employed at more than 8 million worksites around the nation This translates to approximately one compliance officer for every 59,000 workers!
national institute for occupational safety & health NIOSH is part of the CDC, established to help assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by providing research, information, education, and training in the field of occupational safety and health The National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) focuses on national research into the problems of highest relevance to workers, employers, and occupational safety and health practitioners in major industrial sectors NIOSH has adopted a “research-to-practice” philosophy and strategy, to transfer and translate research findings, technologies, and information into highly effective prevention practices and products that can be adopted immediately into the workplace (i.e. safety needles)
So what does this mean to you as a community nurse? Nurses are at risk for 8/10 of the Top 10 causes of workplace injury The health care sector ranks #1 in total nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses combined in 2010 at 52/1,000 Nursing and residential care facilities rank #1 in the highest incidence rate of total nonfatal occupational injury and illness cases in 2010 at 15.1/1,000 Hospitals injury and illness cases ranked #5 in 2010 at 11.8/1,000 Ambulance services ranked #10 in 2010 at 10.8/1,000 Working in healthcare can be dangerous to your health! Take home message
Media highlights Google “workplace injury” and you’ll find law firms ranking ahead of OSHA. Not necessarily an inspiring “preventative” health care message for the public…
Media highlights For the most part, workplace injuries only become newsworthy if they are catastrophic and/or result in multiple fatalities – rarely are individual cases reported upon in the national media Major events reported on last year included the West Virginia coal mine explosion, which killed 25 workers and left another four unaccounted for in the worst mining disaster since 1984, and the Deepwater Horizon explosion, which left 11 dead and numerous injured “USMWF (United Support and Memorial for Workplace Fatalities) offers support, guidance and resources to those affected by preventable work-related deaths or serious injuries” USMWF report a ‘Weekly Toll’ of fatalities with local media coverage if available
In order to be a good role model, make your own health as a health care worker your #1 priority • Be mindful of your own exposure to the potential for workplace illness and injury, especially working within the community health care setting • Be knowledgeable about local resources for legal, financial, and healthcare support for community members affected by workplace illness or injury • Occupational and physical therapy, as well as mental health services (counseling for PTSD, stress, fatigue, depression, etc.) play a key role in caring for an individual affected by a workplace injury once the initial medical crisis is over – interdisciplinary teamwork is essential for this recovering population • Appreciate that a workplace injury can affect an entire family dynamic, putting incredible emotional, and often financial, stress on all family members – empathetic and nonjudgmental communication skills are imperative to an ongoing successful nurse-patient relationship Implications for community Health nursing practice
What was the event? • What health care disciplines were utilized in the recovery process? • Who else did it affect? • How long was the recovery process? • What was the financial cost? • What was the emotional cost? • What was the outcome? What personal or employment experiences of illness and injury in the workplace can you share?
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2011). National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Occupational Hazards in Home Health Care. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from <http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2010-125/pdfs/2010-125.pdf> Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2011). National Vital Statistics Report. Deaths: Final Data for 2007. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from <http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr58/nvsr58_19.pdf> Child and Elder Care Insights. (2011). Safety PostersTop 10 Causes of Workplace Injuries. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from <http://www.eaposters.com/safetyposters_top10.htm> Team 4 Investigation. (2010, May 24). Companies With High Workplace Injury Rates Get 'DART' Letters. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3thGDkqFCs> United Support and Memorial for Workplace Fatalities. (2007). Weekly Toll. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from <http://usmwf.org/about.htm> U.S. Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2011). 2010 Survey of Occupational Injuries & Illnesses. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from <http://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/osh/os/osch0044.pdf> U.S. Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2011). Highest incidence rates of total nonfatal occupational injury and illness cases, 2010. Retrieved November 16, 2011 from >http://www.bls.gov/iif/oshwc/osh/os/ostb2801.pdf> REFERENCES