Nurses in North Carolina are truly heroes these days, putting their own health on the line to care for their many patients day-in and day-out. However, repeated lifting, especially of heavy patients, can put a serious strain on a nurse’s health. This can cause many nurses to suffer serious injuries on-the-job requiring time off of work.
What injuries are common in nursing?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2016 51% of all workplace injuries and illnesses suffered by registered nurses necessitating a median of seven days off work included sprains, strains and tears. The rate of these injuries — 53.1 cases per 10,000 full-time employees — far exceeded the rate of these types of injuries for all other occupations at 32.6 cases per 10,000 employees.
Back injuries are especially common among nurses
Nurses have to lift or move patients every day. Doing so can lead to back injuries. The BLS reports that 27.2 percent of injuries suffered by registered nurses in 2016 requiring time off work for a median of seven days were back injuries. The incident rate of back injuries among registered nurses that year at 28.9 cases per 10,000 full-time employees far exceeded the rate of back injuries among all other occupations at 15.8 cases per 10,000 employees.
Nurses who suffer on-the-job injuries may want to seek worker’s comp
Lifting patients sometimes weighing 200 pounds or more, whether you work in a hospital, clinic, nursing home or other health care facility can cause serious injuries. When you are injured on-the-job, you may be concerned about more than just your health. Hefty medical bills may go unpaid if you are too injured to go to work and earn a paycheck. For this reason, nurses injured on the job in North Carolina may want to seek workers’ compensation benefits. However, the process for obtaining such benefits can be complex, and any mistakes made along the way can lengthen the time it takes to get benefits or even lead to a denial of benefits altogether. For this reason, many nurses injured on-the-job choose to seek legal advice before applying for benefits.