Fall prevention is important in health care settings

Many different hazards are present in the health care industry. For workers, one of the major risks is falls. These can come from a host of causes and can all lead to serious impacts for the injured worker. It is imperative that all workers are provided a safe environment that helps to prevent falls.

The very nature of the work in some departments can mean that a person is at risk for slipping or tripping. Here are some points that nurses and others in this industry can remember:

Wear the right shoes

Even if it isn't required by the dress code of the facility, workers can benefit from wearing slip-resistant shoes. These can provide extra traction even if the floor is a bit slippery, such as if you have to walk on a freshly a mopped floor. Many shoes that are slip-resistant are also ergonomically friendly. This can protect your back, which is a good side effect of the shoes.

Know the work environment

Your work environment matters when you are trying to prevent falls. A person working in a doctor's office won't likely deal with the same level or risks of working in a trauma center. Be aware of slip hazards, such as bodily fluids, and trip hazards, including cords. Pay attention to the floor's surface. Things like buckled floors, rugs with curled edges and uneven surfaces might present obstacles. These can make an otherwise safe environment dangerous.

Many injuries are possible

You can suffer from many types of injuries if you fall, such as sprains and bruising, broken bones, spinal cord trauma and head injuries. Hazards around the area can also lead to cuts, scrapes and burns.

Some of these injuries might not be evident right away, but will show up in the days after the fall.

Take action if a fall occurs

Health care workers might be hesitant to get care after falls at work. They may feel like they are letting patients down if they have to leave a shift. This isn't the case. Waiting to get care can exacerbate injuries. It is a good idea to get seek medical treatment away. In severe cases, such as when employees have to miss work, workers' compensation claims might be in order.

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