MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN AND THE HEALTHCARE PROFESSION
With 70% of our adult population being either overweight or OBESE, and nurses having to frequently move these patients without any help as ‘dead weight,’ it is no wonder there is an abundance of injuries. I routinely hear aides talking about the fact that on one hand they are supposed to get help to move patients that weigh more than a certain amount. But on the other hand, they are given a job to do and expected to do it — often times very short-handed and within a certain time frame.
Is this problem going to get better? According to the report, if more tax dollars were poured into OSHA, it might. I personally find that hard to believe. The report itself gives the reason that the problem is not going to get better. “The burdens placed on the healthcare industry will only increase as the number of baby boomers requiring nursing and living assistance grows over time.” And if the vast majority of these folks are overweight, the physical burden placed on those who take care of them will continue to take a large toll. And even though the MedPage report stated that,”for safe patient handling, they recommended, the use of lifting and transfer aids or similar devices should be a requirement while caring for residents and patients, and this device assistance should be required during all shifts and units“, we know full well that understaffed facilities that are actually in the process of slashing the numbers of employees due to the Obamacare cuts, are not always going to be following this advice.