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Are workplace injuries common in Ohio's nursing homes?

While Ohio residents are clearly aware of the inherent dangers and risks involved in some occupations such as construction work, another workplace environment is now gaining attention for being hazardous: nursing home facilities. Recently, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited ResCare Ohio Inc. because it exposed its Fairfield, Ohio, employees to workplace violence which contributed to time lost from work and may have resulted in workplace injuries.

Employees of residential care facilities and nursing homes missed work due to illness and injury at a high rate throughout the U.S. in 2010. This rate was one of the highest among major industries in America.

OSHA has proposed levying a penalty of $8,700 against the residential care facility for the violations that were uncovered. OSHA's investigation revealed that the facility's employees had interactions with residents who had a history of violent behavior. The investigation also revealed that these employees were victims of physical assaults from some of these residents. The facility recorded a total of 20 workplace violence cases from 2009 through 2012.

OSHA is working hard to develop more of an awareness of the dangers involved in working at nursing home and residential care facilities. It is clear that these employers need to establish more programs to address workplace violence and how to protect their workers against job-related injuries caused by workplace violence.

Injured workers are entitled to receive benefits for loss of wages and medical expenses by filing a workers' compensation claim. Additional medical benefits are also available to those who are temporarily or permanently disabled as a result of workplace accidents.

Source: OSHA.gov, "US Labor Department's OSHA fines ResCare Ohio for inadequate workplace violence safeguards at residential care facility in Fairfield, Ohio," Oct. 3, 2012

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The Bainbridge Firm, LLC

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Columbus, OH 43215

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