According to Labor Department, after transportation-related deaths, falls are the number-one cause on-the-job deaths. Disabilities due to falls are also a serious issue. In fact, fall injuries constitute a considerable amount of Workers’ Compensation and medical costs – approximately $70 billion annually in the United States, according to the National Safety Council. Moreover, non-compliance of CFR 1926.501 Fall Protection is most cited by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA).
It’s important for employers, including those who operate nursing homes and assisted living facilities, to implement measures to improve safety in the workplace and reduce the number of fall incidents among employees (in addition to their patients/residents, which is also of paramount importance). This is particularly so as the projected age level in the workforce is expected to increase significantly, which also increases the exposure to falls. The Labor Department projects that by 2022, workers’ ages between 55-64 will increase by 36.5%, those who are 65-74 will increase by 83.4%, and workers 75 and older will increase by 84.3%.
Following are several steps employers should take:
The facility should also review past Workers’ Compensation claims, including looking at incident reports, first report of employee injury, OSHA and/or occupational health. Review the narrative descriptions of the incidents to identify what types of slips, trips and falls of are most common at the facility and to identify specific locations where there are multiple “injury hot spots” over the last several years.
Caitlin Morgan can assist you in securing Workers’ Compensation insurance for a wide range of industries, including for the senior living sector. We specialize in insuring nursing homes, assisted living facilities and other healthcare facilities and can help in placing a robust comp program that also includes comprehensive loss control and risk management measures. Give us a call at 877.226.1027.