Original Article

Healthcare Industry Injuries by Patient Contact Status in Kentucky, 2012–2014

Authors: Kristen Ranzenberger, DO, MPH, Terry L. Bunn, PhD, Svetla Slavova, PhD

Abstract

Objectives: The healthcare industry continues to have a high number of reported injuries. The purpose of this study was to characterize healthcare industry injuries by patient contact status, identify the occupations associated with healthcare injuries by patient contact status, and determine healthcare injury rates by occupation to gain a better understanding of healthcare industry-compensated injuries and better target safety practices and programs in the healthcare industry.

Methods: Kentucky healthcare industry workers' compensation first reports of injuries from calendar years 2012-2014 were categorized into injuries involved in direct patient contact versus injuries without direct patient contact using narrative text analysis. Injury numbers and rates were calculated for a number of data variables.

Results: Healthcare injuries without direct patient contact (55% of all first reports of injuries) occurred more frequently among older workers (45 years old and older [51%]), in "other"occupations such as housekeeping and maintenance (28%), and as a result of falls/slips/trips (39%) and sprains/tears (38%). In contrast, a higher percentage of healthcare injuries involving direct patient contact occurred among workers younger than 35 years (48%), in healthcare support occupations (50%), and resulting from sprains/tears (66%) and lifting/handling (52%), compared with those without direct patient contact.

Conclusions: Findings from this study can better target the need for new and/or additional specific workplace safety training, especially in the healthcare support and nursing occupations with and without patient contact.

This content is limited to qualifying members.

Existing members, please login first.

If you have an existing account please login now to access this article or view your purchase options.

Purchase only this article ($15)

Create a free account, then purchase this article to download or access it online for 24 hours.

Purchase an SMJ online subscription ($75)

Create a free account, then purchase a subscription to get complete access to all articles for a full year.

Purchase a membership plan (fees vary)

Premium members can access all articles plus recieve many more benefits. View all membership plans and benefit packages.

References

1. The Joint Commission. America' hosptials: improving quality and safety: The Joint Commission' annual report 2014. http://www.jointcommission.org/assets/1/18/TJC_Annual_Report_2014_FINAL.pdf. Accessed July 27, 2016.
 
2. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Workplace injuries and illnesses-2010. http://www.bls.gov/news.release/archives/osh_10202011.pdf. Published October 20, 2011.Accessed July 27, 2016.
 
3. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Safety and health topics: healthcare. http://www.osha.gov/SLTC/healthcarefacilities/index.html. Accessed July 27, 2016.
 
4. Lipscomb HJ, Schoenfisch AL, Myers DJ, et al. Evaluation of direct workers' compensation costs for musculoskeletal injuries surrounding interventions to reduce patient lifting. Occup Environ Med 2012;69:367-372.
 
5. Mayeda-Letourneau J. Safe patient handling and movement: a literature review. Rehabil Nurs 2014;39:123-129.
 
6. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses requiring days away from work, 2013. http://www.bls.gov/news.release/archives/osh2_12162014.pdf. Published December 16, 2014. Accessed July 27, 2016.
 
7. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Stop sticks campaign. http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/stopsticks/sharpsinjuries.html. Published June 26, 2016. Accessed July 27, 2016.
 
8. Rajkumari N, Thanbuana BT, John NV, et al. A prospective look at the burden of sharps injuries and splashes among trauma health care workers in developing countries: true picture or tip of iceberg. Injury 2014;45:1470-1478.
 
9. Markkanen P, Galligan C, Laramie A, et al. Understanding sharps injuries in home healthcare: the Safe Home Care qualitative methods study to identify pathways for injury prevention. BMC Public Health 2015;15:359.
 
10. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Occupational employment and wage estimates Kentucky. http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ky.htm. Accessed July 27, 2016.