August 18, 2017
People go to the hospital in hopes of leaving in much better shape than they arrived. This is why a hospital should maintain a safe environment, and this is also why it is tragic to look at the numbers of additional injuries that occur inside the walls of these healthcare facilities.
While many healthcare facilities are focusing on increasing the safety of patients through new protocols, some are neglecting the importance of maintaining safety for staff and visitors as well, leading to serious slip and fall accidents.
Many of these accidents are the result of environmental components in the hospital. Research suggests that contaminants on the floor is a leading cause of slip and fall injuries in hospitals, followed by improper footwear and lack of safety signage.
While it is simply tragic for a patient to be further injured when at the hospital, it is also important for employers to consider the implications of an employee getting injured. Many of these slip and fall accidents lead to serious injuries, and these injuries can put limits on an employee’s ability to work.
Beyond the headache of handling workers’ compensation claims, employers can also expect a number of inconveniences from the injured employee including lost workdays, reduced productivity, and a reduced ability to care for patients. Statistics show that injuries that lead to a loss of workdays occur at a rate of about 38.2 per every 10,000 healthcare employees, making the risk for these injuries 90% greater for healthcare employees than for all other private industries combined.
These statistics should not be taken lightly.
How to Prevent Injuries at Healthcare Facilities
While these types of incidents may never be entirely eliminated, it is important for healthcare facilities to take the steps necessary to decreasing them.
Training the Cleaning Crew: It is not uncommon for untrained cleaners to be the cause of these incidents. Mistakes with equipment and product usage may play a huge role in these slip and fall injuries.
Therefore, it is the employer’s responsibility to make sure that every cleaner is trained and educated on every product and equipment used. It is recommended that cleaning personnel go through training at least annually.
Proper Footwear: While you may not always be able to control the footwear worn by patients and their visitors, you can require proper footwear for your employees. Make sure that they wear non-slip, closed-toe shoes whenever they are at work.
Signage: It is important that any potential hazard is marked with signage. Whether it’s IV fluid or water spilled, it is important to mark it as you wait for the cleaning crew to clean it, and to leave it marked until the cleaning supplies dry.
It is tragic to trust a facility with your well-being only to get injured further while in their care. It is also tragic to trust your employer only to be injured at work while trying to care for others. If either of these cases happened to you, then we want to help make it right. Call Hensley Legal Group to set up a free consultation, or contact us online.