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Work Injuries Faced by Nurses

A nurse who has been injured or got sick at work should consult with an attorney.

When you get injured or sick on the job, California law requires employers to provide them benefits in the form of medical treatment and disability payments. This is the workers’ compensation system. Registered nurses, physician assistants, licensed vocational nurses, nursing assistants/aides, and related workers face significant health and safety risks. And what can they expect from workers’ compensation?

Where Are Nurses Being Injured Most?

Nurses work in a variety of settings and workers’ compensation claims are not evenly spread across all settings. A study[1]found most nursing workers’ compensation injuries mostly occur in hospitals. Here is the complete breakdown:

1.    Hospitals: 38.9%

2.    Ambulatory care: 29.9%

3.    Nursing/residential care: 21.3%

4.    Social assistance 9.9%

A nurse who has been injured in a hospital or a residential setting may be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits so long as the injury occurred while on the job. A workers’ compensation attorney can advise a nurse whether the injury is compensable under the law.

What Are the Most Common Nursing Injuries?

Strains and tears are the most common injury for all nursing workers’ compensation claims. They are followed by:

·      Contusions

·      Sprains (injuries to ligaments)

·      Other specific injuries

·      Puncture wounds.

Lifting injuries and low back injuries have a higher proportion for workers in nursing/residential care settings. However, lifting injuries are the most common injury for nurses in all settings.

Cumulative trauma injuries, often caused by repetitive motion, represent 6% of nursing workers’ compensation claims. Being struck accidentally or intentionally by a coworker, patient, or other person is about the same.

Puncture wounds are more common for nurses in ambulatory care.

The body parts most injured by nurses are as follows:

1.    Low back

2.    Multiple body part injuries

3.    Fingers

4.    Shoulders

5.    Knees

A nurse sustaining any of these injuries on the job may receive medical treatment through workers’ compensation. Employers are required to provide medical treatment to their employees for injuries common to their industry. A workers’ compensation attorney can help refer a nurse to a specialist in the injury within the employer’s medical provider network.

Nurses and Covid Infections

Workers in nursing/residential care facilities have been especially prone to work-related Covid-19 infection. Residents and workers accounted for 70% of Covid-19 outbreaks among all nursing settings in California. On average, 10.9% of all cases of coronavirus are among nurses and healthcare workers.

If a nurse sustains residual symptoms following infection with Covid-19, he or she may file a workers’ compensation claim for injury to the systems affected. A sample study of states showed California leading withCovid-19 workers’ compensation cases. 

California has adopted several workers’ compensation laws that address Covid-19 infections at work. A workers’ compensation attorney can advise a nurse on how those laws may apply to his or her case.

Consult a Nurse Injury Attorney at SoCal Workers Comp

Nurses know the medical industry very well. But workers’ compensation is different from the general health care system. It is a highly regulated benefit delivery system that involves not just doctors, but claims adjusters, lawyers, and even judges. A nurse who has been injured or got sick at work should consult with an attorney. An attorney from SoCal Workers Comp can help you file your claim, find you the right doctor, and protect your benefits when the insurance company does not do the right thing. A consultation is free, and you only pay us if we win you an award or settlement. Call or schedule a free consultation with us today.


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