Representing Injured Medical Professionals
While all jobs involve risks, healthcare professionals are among those most commonly injured at work. Occupational hazards in the medical field include chemical exposure, injuries due to lifting, and violent reactions by patients. As a specialist in workers' compensation, attorney Gilbert Fisher in Fresno, CA, can help injured doctors, nurses, caregivers, and others collect the compensation necessary to cope with injuries resulting from these hazards.
A Field Involving Frequent Injury
According to a 2013 report by the Centers for Disease Control, there is a high rate of work-related injuries among healthcare professionals in the United States. One in five nonfatal occupational injuries reported were among healthcare workers. Meanwhile, nursing aides, attendants, and orderlies had some of the highest rates of musculoskeletal injuries such as carpal tunnel and tendinitis.
The physical nature of many healthcare careers contributes to this high rate of injury. Medical professionals and caregivers regularly move patients in and out of bed, handle dangerous equipment, and are exposed to chemicals and hazardous waste. Furthermore, workers need to make fast decisions in response to unpredictable situations, which can often lead to unexpected injuries.
Long work hours paired with physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion can exacerbate even minor injuries.
Even a minor injury can severely impact an employee’s ability to work. While precautions such as basic hygiene and assistive devices can reduce these risks, injuries are not always avoidable.
Common Types of Injuries
Due to the wide scope of duties healthcare professionals must perform, the types of injuries they suffer can vary considerably. Some of the most common include:
- Lifting and straining injuries: Lifting a patient in and out of beds or wheelchairs can lead to sprains or muscular strains, especially in the back.
- Cumulative or repetitive injuries: Overuse of certain joints or muscles can result from long periods of standing, excessive typing, and syringe use. Repetitive injuries are especially common in the shoulders, elbows, wrists, hands, and knees.
- Exposure to chemicals or bodily fluids: Accidental pricks from needles can result in contact with blood-borne pathogens, chemicals, or drugs, while regular exposure to radioactive material or anesthetic gas can have a significant impact on long-term health.
- Latex allergies: Until recently, latex gloves were predominantly used to prevent exposure to biological materials during treatment. While other materials are now available, latex is still commonly used in the medical profession and can trigger allergic reactions among some workers.
- Patient violence or assault: In some cases, patients can become aggressive and lash out. Nurses, doctors, and orderlies may be left with injuries ranging from minor bruises to broken bones or lacerations.
- Overexertion: Long work hours paired with physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion can exacerbate even minor injuries.
Gilbert Fisher is Here to Help
If you have been injured during your work in the medical field, contact us online or at (559) 447-1210 to schedule a consultation with Gilbert Fisher. He can gather the evidence necessary to prove that you deserve maximum workers' compensation benefits. He can also help you if a claim has been denied.