As a home health care worker, you have a lot of responsibilities. You’re probably tasked with helping your patients bathe, eat, dress, toilet and engage in other daily activities. Although the job can be emotionally draining, it can also be physically demanding.
Unfortunately, this means that you’re at an increased risk of being injured on the job, which might leave you needing medical treatment and time off work to recover. This can be costly, threatening your financial stability at a time when you’re unable to work.
What injuries are commonly suffered by home health care workers?
There are a lot of ways that you can be injured on the job in this profession. These include each of the following:
- Back injuries: There are many factors that can contribute to a back injury in this line of work, including awkward lifting postures when moving a patient because of IVs and other monitoring hookups being in the way, moving heavy patients whose weight is uneven and who don’t have a natural way to hold them in a balanced fashion, and lifting with a lack of patient cooperation. It only takes one bad experience when moving a patient to suffer a serious back injury.
- Fall injuries: When you’re working in someone else’s home, you might find yourself in an unfamiliar environment where there are more slipping and tripping hazards than you expect. You might trip over torn carpet or slip on a spill in the patient’s kitchen. Depending on how you fall, you might end up with significant injuries.
- Needle stick injuries: If you’re going to administer medication to a patient intravenously, then you’re at risk of being inadvertently pricked when the patient moves unexpectedly or otherwise doesn’t cooperate. Although this may be a minor wound, in some instances it can lead to something more significant, including exposure to a blood born pathogen and infectious diseases.
- Injuries attributable to patient behavior: Not all home health patients are kind and cooperative. Some turn violent and lash out at those who are there to help them. When this happens, you could end up with lacerations, broken bones, or damage to your muscles.
These are just some of the injuries that you can suffer on the job. So, if you’ve been hurt in any fashion while working, then you need to consider your next steps.
What should you do if you’re injured at work?
If you suffer an injury in the course of your employment, then you need to think about seeking out workers’ compensation benefits. To position yourself for success here, you’ll want to take notes about the incident that led to your injury, seek out immediate medical attention, report the accident to your employer and follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations.
If you miss any of these important steps, then your workers’ compensation claim may end up denied, thereby leaving you without the financial resources that you need.
Are you ready to build your claim?
We don’t want to oversimplify the workers’ compensation process. It’s filled with nuances, and all too often workers’ compensation claims are denied.
To avoid that from happening to you, you’ll want to be proactive in building your claim. To do so, you’ll need to know what the workers’ compensation process entails and how to navigate it to your advantage.