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Workplace Hazards for Nurses

John Lesaganich Oct. 27, 2018

Hospitals would not function without nurses, and this occupation makes up one of the largest occupations in American healthcare. Some even say that nurses are the backbone of the healthcare system.

Even though hospitals are typically places we think of for people to go to get better, the individuals who work there could still be in danger of injury. In recent findings, there were over 250,000 recorded hospital workplace injuries/ illnesses in just one year. What are some hazards that nurses face?

Hazards Nurses Face in Hospitals

  • Back injury: This is one of the most common injuries, as nurses are often walking around and bending. They also often have the job of lifting patients, which can strain the back. Statistics show that nurses report more than 35,000 back injuries each year.

  • Overexertion: Some hospitals are understaffed, which means that nurses will work longer hours to the point where they are sustaining exertion injuries. In this case, not only are nurses in danger but patients may be as well.

  • Exposure: Because of the job requirement, nurses must expose themselves to infectious diseases, toxins, and radiation. Hepatitis B exposure and radiation poisoning occur frequently. All of these can lead to serious injury, disability or death.

  • Patient attack: Nurses work in a field where they interact with sick patients. If a patient is confused or mentally unstable, they may attack a nurse, cause anything from a minor to a severe injury.

Nurse safety is essential, which is why if injury occurs, filing for workers compensation is crucial. If you are a nurse who has been injured at work, you may want to consider consulting with legal aid to make sure that you receive the care you deserve.