The Workplace Risks Faced By Nurses
Healthcare workers such as nurses work in one of the most important roles in our society as they are literally on the front line of keeping the rest of us healthy and helping us recover when we become ill or suffer an injury. Unfortunately, that also means that nurses work in one of the most dangerous industries in the country. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has asserted that registered nurses, for example, have experienced some of the highest injury and illness rates in the healthcare and social assistance sector. In 2016, those working in the private industry sector experienced an estimated 19,790 days-away-from-work injury and illness cases. That equates to an incidence rate of 104.2 cases per 10,000 full-time workers which was a significantly greater number than the rate for all occupations (roughly 92 cases per 10,000 workers).
And just like other workers, nurses are now battling the coronavirus pandemic in addition to the numerous other hazards they already faced on a daily basis. But unfortunately, working on the frontline of medical care means their risk of exposure is higher than many others. Sadly, Local 10 News reported that two nurses tested positive with COVID-19 in the same week, one of whom perished from the virus and the other who is continuing to battle it along with her seven-month-old son.
What Workplace Injury Risks Do Nurses Face?
As demonstrated in the tragic example outlined above, communicable diseases can be passed on to nurses, doctors and anyone else who works in healthcare. However, this isn’t the only risk these dedicated caretakers face as they have to battle a variety of hazards on any given day that they fight to avoid in order to return home safely to their families.
Other risks include:
- Slip and falls
- Lifting and moving patients
- Repetitive stress injuries
- Overworking due to understaffing
- Violence from patients and their family members/friends
What Rights to Compensation Do Injured Nurses Have?
Despite their best efforts, some nurses, unfortunately, end a workday with a serious injury as a result of their employment. Fortunately, workers in the state of Florida are generally entitled to obtain the benefits of workers’ compensation when injured at work during the scope of employment. This is a no-fault based system that does not require an injured worker to demonstrate negligence by the employer or anyone else in order to recover benefits. These benefits can include compensation for medical expenses and even lost wages depending on the circumstances of the injury. In addition, total disability benefits may be available if you become disabled and cannot work at all either permanently or temporarily. And in the most tragic cases, death benefits may be paid through workers’ compensation to the surviving dependents of a worker who perished because of the workplace injury.
Have You Been Injured in a Work-Related Incident?
If you have suffered any type of work-related injury in Florida, you should turn to an experienced legal team who can assist you in pursuing the workers’ compensation benefits you may be entitled to. As the Miami workers’ compensation attorneys at Payer & Associates, we have helped injured workers in a variety of circumstances over the years. We have the experience you need and can depend on when dealing with the immediate and long-term consequences of an unexpected workplace accident. Contact us today to begin.