Protect Your Employees and Save on Costly Work Comp Claims

Making sure your employees are protected in their work environment protects you as an employer, and understanding the risks and dangers your employees are exposed to helps create a positive work environment. Your employees are your greatest assets, so educate them and provide them with the necessary equipment for the job.

Occupational health problems can occur at work or because of the kind of work you provide. These problems can include:

  • Cuts, broken bones, sprains and strains, or amputations
  • Repetitive motion disorders
  • Hearing problems caused by exposure to noise
  • Vision problems or even blindness
  • Illness caused by breathing, touching or ingesting unsafe substances
  • Illness caused by exposure to radiation
  • Exposure to germs in healthcare settings

Practicing good job safety and prevention can reduce the risk of these problems and help prevent workers compensation claims. Help by keeping your employees fit, reducing stress levels, setting up their work area properly, and providing the right equipment and gear for the job. Proof:Positive can help you develop the tools and proper safety guidelines to ensure a safe and profitable business.

Exercise Your Way To a Healthier Life and a Better Time at Work

There are 1,440 minutes in every day. Schedule 30 of those for physical activity! Regular exercise is an important element in staying healthy. Living longer and feeling better is a result of being active. Exercising can help you maintain a healthy weight and also delay or prevent diabetes, some cancers, and heart problems.

On the average, most adults need at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity at least five days a week. There are many forms of exercise that people take for granted, such as walking briskly, mowing the lawn, dancing, recreational swimming or going for a bike ride. Developing good weight training and stretching programs can also increase your health.

The best way to come up with a good exercise plan is to think of the things that you enjoy doing so you are more likely to stay motivated. You can walk with a friend, take a class or plan a group or family bike ride. Remember, if you have been inactive for awhile, you should start slow and work your way up to a regular exercise routine.

Not only will you begin to see the benefits in your health, but you will see it on the job as well. When you’re healthy you can focus better, have more energy, and have the strength to lift objects at work. We all put our bodies through a strenuous workout on a daily basis – just sitting at our desk can take a toll on our bodies. Strengthening and exercising our bodies allows us to withstand the stress and physical demands of working and living so we can achieve a healthy lifestyle.

Ergonomics: Minimizing Risk and Preventing Injury While on the Job

Ergonomics is derived from the Greek language -ergon meaning “to work” and nomos meaning “rules.” The “rules of work” is the process of fitting the work environment to you – the person doing the work. Ergonomics focuses on optimizing the design of equipment, tools, and workplaces to minimize risk and potential injury, and stay on the job.

Ergonomics starts with you and attempts to accommodate your strengths and limitations. Considerations include your strength, size, endurance, range of joint motion, age, gender, and physical condition (health & fitness). The goal is to design a work process that can appropriately fit you and the people that work with you.

A machine has limitations to what it can perform and so does the human body. Just as an engineer would not design a job beyond the capacity of a machine, ergonomics focuses on designing within the capabilities of the human body. When these limitations are exceeded, the potential for an on-the-job-injury increases.

Ergonomics does not need to be complicated – in most cases it is simply common sense. If something does not feel natural, chances are it may include one or more adjustments to the work process that can make a tremendous difference.

When recognizing the effect of musculoskeletal disorders (MSD’s) in the workplace, employers should consider initiating a partnership to identify and control ergonomic risk factors. Many labor unions across the country have recognized this importance and are working cooperatively with employers to implement the ongoing process of an Ergonomic Risk Diminish Program (ERDP).

The goal of the Proof:Positive ERDP is to ensure that all employees return home in the same condition as when they came to work; and ERDP’s vision is for all employees reach their well-deserved retirement in a physical condition that will allow them to enjoy it.

If you are interested in learning more about ERDP and/or Proof:Positive, please contact us to learn more about the range of related services we provide.

Again, the goal is to diminish the wear and tear on your body by “working smarter, not harder.”

How You Can Help Relieve the Stress of an Injury

Even if you have the best safety program, there is always the potential of someone getting hurt at work. Taking care of the injury should be handled quickly and thoroughly, and treatment must be provided by the employer. But how about treating the injured workers worries and concerns?

Health and Wellness Rooms can help provide knowledge which can help reduce the stress of an injury. Proof:Positive not only provides a place for the injured worker to recover, while remaining on your normal payroll, but also a place to learn about their injury. Having an understanding of your injury can help relieve worries of the unknown. Proof:Positive staffs each room with people who have medical experience so they can help teach the injured employee about their injury. The room is a quiet classroom like environment where the injured workers can have peace of mind by continuing to work as they heal. Also they have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss their injuries and concerns.

Each room coordinator works closely with the doctors to ensure that the injured worker is working within their restrictions. The coordinators also help encourage them to do the home therapy given to them by their therapist. The Health and Wellness Room has ice, heat, recumbent exercise bikes and therapy beds for stretching. These help motivate the injured worker to complete their therapy rather than sitting at home.

Talking to the injured worker, listening to their concerns, and finding answers to their questions can help relieve some stress of being injured. Let us help them down the path of recovery through care and compassion, while educating them about their injury and teaching them how to prevent the injury from reoccurring.

Reasons to Protect Your Employees’ Back

Injuries to the spinal column or back region are common, and many of these injuries are preventable. Depending on the type of business you have, using a good lifting program and educational safety system, can help protect your employees from injury.

Here are some compelling reasons to protect your employees from back injuries:

  • 80% of Americans will have a back injury that requires medical attention
  • Back injuries are the second most common cause of lost work time, next to the common cold
  • Injured backs are often subject to re-injury
  • In addition to missed work, there may be major costs accrued by your company
  • Back injuries alone cost the American industry $10- 14 billion in workers compensation costs and about 100- million lost workdays annually

 Source: Design to Success

Take the time to analyze your company or business and see if your safety program protects you and your employees. Proof:Positive can help you save money and create a safe environment with safety educated employees.

Avoid On the Job Injuries From Musculoskeletal Disorders

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD) is a term used to describe injuries to the muscles, tendons, ligaments, peripheral nerves, structures, bones or associated vascular system of the body. These injuries may occur to any part of the body (hands, arms back, etc.). Several risk factors have been associated with the development of MSD’s. The presence of risk factors in work activities are common and do not necessarily indicate a concern, but the question is how much and for how long.

Akward Postures: The position of the body during work, e.g., bending, reaching, twisting, standing. The body is strongest when the joints are in their neutral posture. Deviations from this posture will greatly affect the body’s available strength.

Forceful Motions: The force acting on the body during work, e.g., pushing, pulling, lifting, torque reaction, weight. The external force can translate to a much larger internal force in the body (e.g. a 40 lb. load in the hands can produce a load of over 800 lbs on the spine).

Repetitive Motion: The number of times a joint is moved and overall duration of a task, e.g., number of pinch grips per minute, number of lifts.

Contact Stress: The physical contact between the body and the work surface. Contact stress can result in restrictions of blood circulation and increases in tendon friction.

Environment: This includes lighting, glare, noise levels, temperature, vibration and humidity. The environmental effects can dramatically increase the physical effort required to do a job.

Personal Risk Factors: People are different and respond differently to the presence of ergonomic risks.

Controlling Personal Risk Factors: Balance stress on joints by exercising opposing muscles off the job. Stretch muscles before using them to prevent injuries. Don’t ignore pain. Choose safe exercises. Always check with health care provider before starting new exercise programs.

To reduce the potential for on-the-job-injuries for your employees, it is important that the principals defined are considered throughout their daily activities.

If you are interested in finding out more about Proof:Positive Consulting and the services we provide, please contact us.