The Easiest Injury to Treat
According to data from Liberty Mutual and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are nearly 54,000 workplace injuries annually costing companies nearly $62 billion in direct costs to treat these injuries. No industry is immune to workplace injury and company owners, HR professionals, Safety professionals, and individual employees need to have a continual focus on reducing the risk of workplace injury.
The easiest injury to treat is the one that never happens. Having a physical therapist as part of your safety and injury prevention team is an effective way to reduce injuries. As a member of the safety team, a physical therapist will take their years of education in diagnosing and treating injury and apply this expertise in the workplace environment to identify tasks that put employees at risk for injury. Also, with an onsite presence of a physical therapist, any injury symptoms can be addressed immediately and proper interventions given in order to limit the effects of the injury. With immediate attention, the duration and effect of an injury is limited significantly. The long term effects of early intervention include:
- Limiting recordable injury numbers
- Limiting time away from work
- Increased productivity
- Improved employee morale
- A change in company culture to focus on injury prevention
- Limited direct and indirect cost of treating an injured worker
- Limited employee turnover
- A significant improvement in the bottom line profitability
“Working onsite can be a great asset to employers and employees,” Dr. Ryan Cotton, Physical Therapist and Director of Body One Work Solutions says. “I can work with employees to teach them the proper form that will not only make their daily activities easier, but also pain free. If a workplace injury were to occur, I am an essential tool for employees to get back to their pre-injury status and back to work as soon as possible.”
There are a few steps employers can take, in conjunction with our Body One Work Solutions team to help prevent work-place injuries, such as:
Creating an accurate and comprehensive job description is a vital resource for an employer. It is important to have a document that fully outlines all the essential demands of the job. Using this job description, a job specific test can be developed. An appropriate job test is an effective tool to guide hiring, post-offer testing, and return to work transitions.
Having a regular presence of a physical therapist on site as part of your safety team has many positive results including:
- Identifying postures or positions which could put employees at risk of injury
- Identify “minor issue” injuries at their onset and address them before they become a recordable injury
- Education for employees on lifting techniques and posture to prevent injury
- Education for employees on stretching and strengthening programs that can better equip their bodies to perform their job
- Changing the environment to focus on injury prevention
No matter how many preventative measures have been put in place, work place injuries can still happen. A physical therapist who works onsite on a regular basis will have intimate knowledge of the job demands and the work environment. This will help the therapist guide treatment while focusing on returning the employee to work. Also, with knowledge of all the jobs within a workplace, the physical therapist could also make recommendations for other jobs if restrictions are applied to the injured worker.
Body One Work Solutions wants to work with your company to help reduce the impact of injuries on your bottom line. Our team can deliver the insight and expertise you need to keep injuries from burdening your team, reduce the number of injury reports filed, and eliminate some of the financial obligations tied to caring for injured employees.