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Canton, Ohio, Workers' Compensation Blog

Disability benefits and ulcerative colitis

People in Ohio with ulcerative colitis may find the effects of their disorder so painful and disabling that they are unable to work. They might winder if they could be approved for Social Security Disability benefits on the basis of their diagnosed condition. Like other types of digestive disorders, ulcerative colitis may qualify a sufferer for disability benefits depending on their overall health condition, their functional limitations and their work history and skills. There is a disability listing for adult disorders of the digestive system, including ulcerative colitis as well as inflammatory bowel disease or gastrointestinal hemorrhage.

Under the listing, patients must have a bowel obstruction or two of a listed set of effects to be approved for SSD benefits. In order to qualify, people must be receiving ongoing treatment from a physician, and these must occur within one six-month period. If they have perineal disease with a fistula or abscess, a tender and painful abdominal mass, significant involuntary weight loss, artificial nutrition, anemia or a lack of albumin, they may qualify depending on the number of symptoms and the level of pain that they suffer due to their disorder.

Applying for SSD benefits with migraines

People in Ohio who struggle with migraine headaches may find that their pain prevents them from working effectively or even from doing their job at all. They may be unable to keep a job due to the recurring effects of migraines. As a result, they might look to Social Security Disability to provide benefits that could replace their income due to their disability. While there is no specific Social Security Administration impairment listing related to migraines, this condition can lead to a legitimate award of disability benefits.

People with migraines may not face an easy path in seeking approval for SSD benefits, but they can be approved for disability. Migraines are generally considered a type of neurological impairment, but sufferers may face a difficult time showing that their migraines make them unable to work. While it may be impossible to keep some jobs, Social Security disability examiners may expect that migraine sufferers are able to generate some form of substantial and gainful income, which is the standard that the agency uses to determine eligibility for benefits. People who can show that migraines cause a major limitation to their daily activities might be approved for Social Security Disability through a medical vocational allowance.

A brain injury is a life-changing event

In the flash of a moment, life changed. You heard the news that your loved one had been in an accident, or perhaps you were involved in the crash too. At the hospital, doctors informed you that your loved one had suffered a brain injury, and your imagination may have had no way to prepare you for what to expect.

A brain injury can be traumatic for the victim, but it is often just as much a trauma for the victim's family and friends. You likely sat by your loved one's hospital bed and watched while doctors did their best to make him or her comfortable and prevent further damage to the brain. As painful as that was, you must now face what lies ahead, knowing that a brain injury can mean lifelong struggles for the victim and the family.

Shaming companies leads to fewer violations

Between 2009 and 2017, companies in Ohio and throughout the country that incurred serious OSHA violations would be named in a press release. According to one study conducted by an economist from Duke, the policy of publicly shaming violators helped to curtail violations. Specifically, the study found that there was a 73% decrease in violations incurred by companies located within 5 kilometers of a major violator that was publicly shamed.

That was estimated to be equivalent to 210 OSHA inspections. The study also found that there was a 36% decrease in violations among organizations located within 10 kilometers of a business that had been publicly outed for its bad behavior. According to the economist, the decline in violations was likely the result of companies looking to avoid bad press. Union representatives were also able to use a company's safety record against it when it came time to negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement.

OSHA schedules 2020 Safety Stand-Down for May 4-8

Construction employers in Ohio should be aware that OSHA has scheduled its annual National Safety Stand-Down for May 4 to 8, 2020. OSHA has held this voluntary event for seven years in a row in the effort to raise employers' awareness of the number one killer in the construction industry: falls.

Falls from elevated surfaces accounted for 320 of the 1,008 construction deaths recorded in 2018, and the especially tragic thing is that these were preventable. Most of the time, all it takes is for workers to be properly trained on detecting fall hazards.

Keeping mine workers safe from the risk for fires

Mine workers in Ohio are probably aware of the risks they face on the job. One of the fiercest of these is the risk for fires. The following are just some of the key concerns related to fires and what can be done to address them.

The risk for fires is largely controlled by whether employers have efficient ventilation and are monitoring the atmosphere for the presence of smoke and toxic gases, especially when produced by underground conveyor belts. That risk obviously goes up in the presence of methane, and the chances of workers being injured or killed in fires will increase if there are few evacuation routes.

Federal standards for lab workers' safety

For lab workers in Ohio, workplace safety can be very important. There are over 500,000 people in the United States working in laboratories, and they may face a number of significant dangers on the job, including chemical, biological and radiological toxins as well as typical concerns about space, comfort and safety in the case of an emergency. The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration laboratory standards were created to define ways in which workers in laboratories should be protected, including employees in research labs, chemical storage facilities, waste handling and loading docks for lab facilities.

Any employer that operates a laboratory using hazardous chemicals must follow and implement the standards specified by OSHA for safety in the lab in order to protect workers from injuries on the job. Each employer must specify a chemical hygiene officer to provide guidance in writing a chemical hygiene plan. This plan provides detailed policies to protect workers from toxic exposure and other dangers on the job. It can specify work practices as well as personal protective equipment that shields workers from direct exposure to dangerous substances. In some cases, special protections are mandatory, including when workers handle some chemicals that can cause cancer or reproductive harm.

Contractors turn to supervisors to improve construction safety

A report from Dodge Data & Analytics has shown how more construction contractors in Ohio and across the U.S. are emphasizing worker participation and the leading role of supervisors in their effort to improve safety. Job site workers and supervisors are related to the top four factors that most contractors brought up as being essential to safety.

First came the involvement of job site workers with 84% of study participants acknowledging its importance. After that came leadership skills in supervisors at 83%, regular safety meetings between workers and supervisors at 82% and the ability for both groups to access safety training at 77%. These ranked above the need for safety audits at 67% and for staff members devoted exclusively to safety at 62%.

Did your love one suffer from bedsores?

When you found a suitable nursing care facility for your parent, you likely assumed the staff would be attentive to your loved one's routine needs as well as any medical issues. This may include help with daily tasks like bathing, changing clothes and getting to the bathroom. If your loved one was ill or bedridden, assistance with these actions that most people take for granted may be even more important.

After lying or sitting in one position for too long, one may soon develop pressure ulcers, commonly called bedsores. These sores result when bodily tissue compresses between bone and another surface without relief. This restricts blood flow to those areas, which eventually causes the tissue to die. Pressure sores are preventable in many cases and treatable in others. However, a nursing home staff must be alert for them before they escalate into a potentially tragic end.

How employers can prevent fall injuries and deaths

OSHA updated its workplace safety rules in 2016, and it's still citing employers for violations of fall protection guidelines, which are the most common violations that the safety organization continues to see. Fatal falls account for 33% of all fatalities in the construction industry in Ohio and across the U.S. An estimated $70 billion in medical costs and workers' compensation benefits are paid out in connection with work-related falls annually.

The following are some guidelines on how to prevent falls on the job. Employers should always plan ahead and determine when workers will be working from an elevated surface. For example, workers may be working atop a tree or on scaffolding. Employers should then ensure that workers have received the right training and safety equipment, keeping in mind that injuries and fatalities occur even at heights of 6 feet.