Workers' compensation is valuable for workers in all sorts of industries, but some fields may require greater legal support for a successful claim. The nursing field, in particular, faces significant risks. Before you file a workers' compensation claim as a nurse, you may need to reach out to an attorney for guidance. Here are some of the most common injuries for nurses and common reasons why you might need a lawyer's support.
Nurses work with syringes and sharp instruments regularly, which increases their risk of biohazard contamination from a puncture. Whether it results from improper disposal or an accident, a puncture wound can introduce all sorts of biohazard threats. In these cases, you'll want to talk with an attorney first to ensure that you have adequate documentation of the situation before filing your claim.
Lift or Strain Injuries
Nurses are the front line of care for patients, which means that they spend a lot of time on their feet and endure physically demanding tasks, such as lifting and moving patients. These duties put nurses at risk of back, leg, shoulder, and arm injuries from the strain. When those types of injuries occur, you should file a workers' compensation claim. You don't need to be able to pinpoint the exact patient that caused it because it is often a result of repetitive movement and strain causing cumulative damage.
Slip and Fall Injuries
Although standard nursing attire includes non-slip shoes, that doesn't mean that nurses are immune to slipping and falling in a slippery environment. Whether something was spilled and not addressed in a timely manner or a trauma response created an unsafe environment, a nurse that slips and falls on a wet or slippery floor can qualify for workers' compensation.
While it may not happen on a daily basis, nurses experience physical violence from patients more frequently than they should. Even with all of the safety measures in the hospital, a combative patient may lash out and cause physical injury. In those cases, nurses may have the potential to file assault charges, but most instances are handled as workers' compensation claims.
These are some of the most common workers' compensation hazards for nursing professionals. Understanding the risks that lead to workers' compensation claims can help nurses proactively protect themselves. Recognize that some of these risks may be unavoidable, but take the measures that you can and reach out to a workers' compensation attorney right away if you suffer an injury.
For more information, reach out to a local law firm, such as Bollenbeck Law, S.C.