When it comes to the most dangerous jobs in the country, few people think of healthcare near the top of the list. However, professionals in this sector - especially nurses - are particularly at risk of on-the-job accidents and illnesses.
In fact, the demands and responsibilities of the job often mean forgetting about one's personal safety. Nurses place their patients first, and this leads to heavy lifting, long hours and an increase in workers' compensation insurance claims. However, it doesn't have to be this way, and employers can do a lot to help out their teams of nurses when it comes to safety.
For example, here are three tips on how to improve workplace health and wellness in the healthcare industry:
1. Learn to identify hazards
Part of staying safe involves being able to spot a dangerous situation and stay away. Healthcare professionals website Healthcare Traveler explained that nurses are also at risk of workplace violence. A number of cases even cause the affected person to miss time. Plus, certain tasks are more dangerous than others, such as lifting a heavy patient alone. Therefore, nurses should learn to identify these hazards and always err on the side of caution. Get help, call security or step away.
2. Keep a dialog open
Communication is one of the most important elements behind safety. Healthcare Traveler stressed the value of an open dialog in the workplace. For example, administrators and nurses should be in constant contact about the on-the-job risks. This can help illuminate potential problems and provide clear answers about affordable solutions. Without communication, hazards may go unchecked for a long period of time. If that occurs, the likelihood of an accident will increase.
3. Bring in the best tools
While much of nursing is very hands-on, the right tools still need to be in place to prevent workplace injuries. According to career advice website Monster, employers should offer the best technology and training for their staff members. This can include motorized ceiling lifts, transfer aids and proper safety gear to prevent accidents and stress. In addition, some medical facilities even have specialists on hand to evaluate the work environment. These professionals can point out areas where risks are common and places where improvements need to be made. Overall, a strong focus on safety and health can keep nurses on the job and happy.