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How nurses can stay safe on the job

| Sep 1, 2020 | Workers' Compensation |

As a nurse in Tennessee, you face a number of situations every day that could lead you to be injured or become ill, so it’s important to know what sort of steps to take to prevent these incidents. Below are a few basic points.

Healthy lifestyle outside of work

Everything starts with sufficient sleep, a regular exercise regimen and a healthy diet. During your shift, you can eat nutrient-dense foods and, in particular, yogurt and other foods with probiotics. If your hospital or medical center offers unit stretch breaks, take advantage of these.

Protective gear and safe needle handling

Nurses are expected to use the right personal protective equipment to keep patients’ fluids from entering into their system: for example, gowns, gloves, masks and eye protection. They should be immunized against the flu, hepatitis B, tetanus and other pathogens.

OSHA says that every year, there are some 385,000 needlestick- and sharps-related injuries among hospital personnel. Safe handling is essential. For example, never recap needles, and make sure the safety mechanism is automatic.

Avoiding injuries to the back

Lifting heavy patients can result in back injuries if you’re not careful, so call for help when necessary or use a lift and transfer device, however time-consuming that may be. Nurses should watch out for clutter on the floor because slip, trip and fall injuries are common in their field.

In case you were injured while working

The workers’ compensation program can provide you with benefits if you suffered an occupational injury or illness, but know that there are times when the employer may reject the claim. You may consequently have to mount an appeal. A lawyer may help guide you through the complexities of filing and even explain when it might be smart to go for a lump-sum settlement.