According to a report by the non-profit group Public Citizen, health care workers endure more injuries and illnesses on the job than any other industry, due to limited safety standards and inspections.
The report shows health care workers had approximately 654,000 workplace injuries and illnesses in 2010, approximately 152,000 more than the manufacturing industry. Even though health care workers outnumber construction workers 2 to 1, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducts nearly 20 times more inspections of construction sites than health care sites.
“The record is clear that the government has broken its promise to health care workers,” stated Keith Wrightson, worker safety advocate for Public Citizen and co-author of the report. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, health care workers face a wide range of hazards on the job, including back injuries from lifting patients and equipment, needle sticks and patient violence.
“[H]ealth care is undoubtedly deserving of significantly more inspections than it currently gets,” stated Taylor Lincoln, research director at Public Citizen and co-author of the study.
Although the severity of injuries in the manufacturing industry could explain the higher number of inspections, the report says OSHA’s limited resources ($535 million for 2013 to monitor 7 million work sites) are to blame.
Health care workers have a right to feel safe while they are on-the-job. If you were injured on the job, you should file a workers’ compensation claim. Call our firm today to schedule a free consultation. We want to hear your story and help you through this difficult time. Please comment below or visit our Facebook page to tell us your story.