While no job is without risk, some jobs are more dangerous than others. Although many people do not think of nursing when they consider hazardous occupations, the profession puts men and women in danger every day. The risks involved with nursing make it one of the most dangerous jobs in the United States.
In addition to the risk for workplace accidents when preforming everyday tasks, such as lifting and moving patients, nurses also often face physical violence and verbal abuse from patients. Irritated patients lash out at nurses when they are unhappy with their treatment. The cases of assault range from abusive language, yelling, and spitting, to violence, including kicking, scratching, and stabbing.
Cases of workplace assault involving nurses occur in hospitals and clinics around the country. According to the Government Accountability Office, the rates of workplace violence in health care and social assistance settings are 5 to 12 times higher than the overall estimated rates for workers.
A Call for Change
Measures against workplace assault and violence do not exist on a federal level. While many states are lobbying for better safety measures and protection for nurses, there are only 26 states with approved workplace safety standards for health-care facilities according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
State-by-state efforts are slowly making the profession safer. To quell workplace violence, many states have made assaulting a nurse a felony. Nurses have also started calling for changes that include better lighting, furniture that is bolted down, and escape routes in the event of an attack.
Many nurses are also fighting for a cultural shift in how their job is viewed. The female-dominated profession is not seen as heroic or dangerous. Every year, nurses sacrifice their own comfort and safety to promote the safety and comfort of their patients.
Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Gross Assist Victims of Workplace ViolenceIf you or a loved one has experienced an injury, accident, or case of assault in the workplace, you may be entitled to compensation. Call 267-589-0090 or complete our online form to schedule a free initial consultation with a Philadelphia Workers’ Compensation lawyer at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Gross. Our offices are located in Philadelphia and we assist clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.