From office workers to construction workers, back pain is an omnipresent cause of lost work hours. Reportedly, it is second on the list of reasons for visits to doctors nationwide, including Ohio. Although some work-related cases follow single incident injuries, most result from the repetitive strain of back muscles that could cause long-term health problems if ignored.
Back injuries are preventable
According to the National Safety Council, a lower back injury’s average cost is often more than $38,000. That alone should encourage employers to invest in equipment to reduce the need for employees to lift, push, pull, carry and lower heavy or awkwardly shaped objects. Regardless of the industry, back injuries are preventable.
Frequent training demonstration can prevent complacency
The first and most crucial step in mitigating injuries that cause back pain is proper training in safe lifting techniques and the safe operation of equipment. However, such training should not be a single session but repeated to prevent complacency. Workers often become complacent after extended periods without reported incidents.
Employers are responsible for protecting employees from work-related injuries and illnesses. It requires much more than telling workers to be safe. Safety standards must be in place and enforced. Safety regulations for material handling should require clearly marked limits on the weight workers may lift without equipment or co-workers’ assistance.
Workers’ rights to compensation
Ohio workers in all industries are typically eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, regardless of who caused the injuries. When it comes to back pain, the longer the employee delays seeking medical treatment, the higher the risk of long-term health problems. Reporting it to the employer as soon as possible is best because it could set the wheels rolling for a benefits claim to cover medical expenses. Partial coverage of lost wages will be included if the injury causes temporary disability.