There is typically a difference between a tweaked back that gets better after a few days and a serious injury sustained at work. However, pain can make someone feel miserable most of the time.
Job-related back injuries can result in decreased productivity and reduced profit margins. More serious incidents could cause a disability, potentially requiring long-term care or workplace accommodations. So, as an organization, how can you care for your workforce while also protecting your bottom line?
Measures to reduce potential risk factors
Although some industries tend to report more back injury risks than others, factors from virtually any line of work could contribute to an employee’s injury report. Improper lifting techniques could cause problems among healthcare workers, for example. Yet, the inactivity of typical administrative positions can also become problematic.
Despite probable jobsite liability, the thorough implementation of safety procedures can mitigate risk. As an employer, consider the needs of your workers, coupled with your protection.
Depending on your workplace environment, you might be wise to:
- Provide ergonomically correct furniture
- Train employees to ask a co-worker for help when they lift heavy objects
- Encourage movement breaks throughout the workday
- Require a specific type of footwear
- Supply assistive devices for in-house distribution
Regardless of your best efforts, you will probably need to handle a workers’ compensation claim at some point throughout your tenure. However, although many requests for benefits are legitimate, there is always the possibility that someone will file a fabricated claim.
An investigation into each report of injury can help you determine the root cause of the problem in question, as well as whether workers’ compensation applies. While it is important to address your employee’s injuries as quickly as possible, you can protect your interests by validating claims before you agree to the related financial responsibilities.