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Minimizing the risk for nursing injuries

Nurses in New Jersey and the rest of the U.S. are frequently exposed to health and safety risks. However, there are ways they can minimize their risks for potentially life-threatening injuries. The following tips were collected by a panel of experts and presented by NurseZone.

The first and most obvious tip is to wash one's hands to prevent the spread of illness. Second, nurses should always use lift and transfer equipment even when it takes additional time. If they try to lift a patient themselves, they risk hurting their back. Practicing good body mechanics is the third tip. This includes wearing supportive shoes and rotating a task from one hand to the other.

Nurses should always step in when their co-workers need help lifting a patient or dealing with a violent patient. The next two tips are to get a flu vaccine and to immunize one's self against other pathogens like hepatitis B, tetanus, the measles and mumps. Nurses should further look after their own health through plentiful sleep and good self-care (exercising daily and eating nutritious foods).

To protect themselves against bloodborne pathogens, nurses must wear the appropriate personal protective equipment. Lastly, they should properly handle and dispose of needles.

Following these safety tips may not prevent all nursing accidents, but a victim can still be reimbursed for their losses by pursuing a workers' compensation case. The benefits will cover medical expenses, provide wage replacement and even include short- or long-term disability leave. Unfortunately, some employers may try to deny benefits. With a lawyer, a victim may file their claim and, if necessary, mount an appeal.

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