A hospital is one of the most hazardous places to work in the United States. Hospital workers are in a unique field, where a patient’s well-being is often placed above their own. Several kinds of injuries can occur because of this unique hospital culture, such as overexertion. Due to the unpredictability of some patients, hospital workers are often faced with split-second decisions that could result in injury.
If you or a family member has been injured while working at a hospital, you should consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. The Fayetteville hospital work injury lawyer Ken Kieklak understands the frustration of suffering an injury at work and can help you file your personal injury case. Ken Kieklak has dedicated years of his career to helping injured workers obtain compensation for their injuries and would be proud to represent you. To schedule a free consultation, call us at (479) 316-0438.
Most Common Causes of Hospital Work Injuries in Arkansas
Hospital worker injuries typically arise from a few well-known hazards. The majority of these hazards are associated with caring for patients. For example, overexertion and “bodily reaction” account for 48 percent of injuries to hospital workers. Bodily reaction refers to motions such as lifting, bending, or reaching.
Here are four other common causes of injuries among hospital workers:
- Slips, trips, and falls account for 25% of hospital worker injuries
- Contact with objects (like needles) account for 13% of injuries
- Violence regarding unpredictable patients account for 9% of injuries to workers
- Exposure to substances account for 4% of injuries to workers
- All other causes account for 1% of injuries to hospital workers
However, there are also other risks to hospital workers. The higher in age a healthcare worker becomes, the more susceptible they may become to infections and musculoskeletal injuries.
Hospital Work Injury Statistics
In 2011, hospitals in the U.S. recorded 58,860 work-related injuries and illnesses caused hospital employees to miss work. Days away from work mostly include days when a hospital worker could no longer come to work because of severe injuries, as opposed to injuries that an employee may continue to work with on a modified shift. When looking at the amount of time lost due to injury, it is more dangerous to work at a hospital than to be a construction or factory worker.
Sprains and strains account for more than 54% of injuries that result in time away from work. This should be no surprise, as many of these injuries are sustained when transporting a patient. If a patient becomes ill to the point where they are not fully in control of their body, hospital workers are expected to aid lifting and moving patients. Due to tasks like this, it is easy for a healthcare worker to suffer a sprain when moving patients, especially heavier patients.
In 2011, U.S. hospitals reported 16,680 cases where workers missed work due to a musculoskeletal injury. Studies have shown that making the workplace safer for healthcare workers will likely result in higher patient satisfaction levels. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), hospital worker fatigue, injury, and stress have often been linked to medication errors and patient infections. Ensuring that hospital workers operate in a safer environment for themselves is also important to certify patients are properly treated as well.
Filing a Personal Injury or Workers’ Compensation Claim in Fayetteville, AR
If you wish to file a personal injury claim for your hospital workplace injury, you should move quickly. While Arkansas may give you three years to file your case with a court, there are several reasons that you should consider filing sooner than that. For example, there may have been witnesses to your workplace injury, if you file your case too late the memory of those witnesses may become unreliable.
Another reason to file your case early is that you may have medical bills you may need to pay for if the injury was serious enough to prevent you from working. Perhaps most importantly, if you do not file your case in a timely fashion, your claim may be barred from being filed. Attempting to file a case after the deadline has run is a sure way to forfeit your case and lose any chance of compensation you may have.
Alternatively, you could also choose to make a workers’ compensation claim instead of filing a personal injury claim against your employer. A workers’ compensation claim will provide funds for any medically necessary expenses that resulted from your injury. Injured workers should be aware that they must attend medical appointments and follow their doctor’s treatment plan or risk forfeiting their benefits.
Wage-loss benefits or cash benefits are also available for injured workers. Cash benefits typically have a minimum and maximum range that an injured worker could receive. These benefits are paid to an injured worker for varying lengths of time that is dependent upon the severity of your injury.
A workers’ compensation claim will preclude you from filing a personal injury claim against your employer, so discuss your options with an attorney.
Fayetteville, AR Hospital Workplace Injury Attorney
If you or a family member has suffered an injury while working at a hospital, the Arkansas hospital injury attorney Ken Kieklak is here to help you. Ken Kieklak has represented clients in various forms of injury and workman’s comp cases and has over a decade of experience in litigating these kinds of cases. If you are a hospital worker and are dedicated to aiding patients in any way you can, there is no reason you should not be compensated for your workplace injury. To schedule a free consultation, contact us at (479) 316-0438.