As a nurse, you dedicate your life to helping others when they are sick or injured. Unfortunately, this increases the risk you will become injured or ill yourself.
Hospitals are full of hazards to workers
Here are some of the most frequent dangers nurses encounter:
- Back injuries: Obesity is a massive health problem in the U.S. It increases the chance someone will end up in the hospital and increases the risk you could injure your back if you need to lift them.
- Sharps injuries: Dealing with syringes and other sharp instruments is essential in your role as a nurse. If someone has left a dirty needle lying around, or if a patient you are moving has one in their pocket, it could spike you and pass their disease onto you.
- Infection: As a nurse, you may be exposed to infectious diseases daily. You could literally be putting your life on the line to help others.
- Chemicals: Hospitals use potent cleaning agents to keep the place clean. Contact with them could harm you.
- Violence: Many nurses have been attacked by patients or caught in the crossfire of a dispute. Patients may be there due to injuries sustained when drunk or during a fight. Others could be high on drugs or have mental health issues.
- Stress: Working in a life and death environment can take a massive mental toll. Add in long shifts, overtime and rotating shift patterns, which disrupt sleep, and your mind will suffer, as well as your body.
Your employer should have workers’ compensation insurance to help with costs you incur due to illness or injury. You may want legal help to ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled to.