What are general causes of musculoskeletal injuries?
Physical difficulty and dangers of the job, poor ergonomics, body mechanics & movement issues, knowledge deficits, lack of time and help, communication breakdowns, inadequate strength and inadequate training.
What maximizes workplace Musculoskeletal Health?
- AT TIME OF HIRE
- Know the Physical Requirements of the Job through JOB ANALYSIS, which enables advanced recruitment.
- Hire individuals safe to perform the physical requirements of the job. Individuals who do not have adequate strength will not be safe. Valuable on-boarding efforts and costs are wasted without testing. Use Objective, regulatory compliant, ABILITYusa POST-OFFER Testing that is based on Job Analysis.
- Physical demands summary is provided following job analysis for attachment to job description.
- New hire orientation training and monitoring takes into account physical and environmental realities during job specific safety training and injury prevention reviews. In addition, any added work practices training is given an individual based on potential issues identified during their participation in ABILITYusa musculoskeletal testing.
- ON THE JOB
- Assure ergonomically appropriate work environment and equipment. Individuals know and demonstrate their knowledge for how and why to adjust equipment to meet their body dimensions.
- Active stretch/motion/release movement sessions for position specific groups, established by ABILITYusa professionals.
- Regular periodic rounds with ABILITYusa ergonomic assessment specialists for all shifts. Followed by regular training, as applicable.
- Regular safety rounds by company safety personnel.
- Active safety committee including ABILITYusa participation.
- Staff incentivized to participate in various special walking or exercise groups, on-site, or off-site resources.
- AT FIRST HINT OF SYMPTOM…..HEAD INJURIES OFF at the PASS!
- Establish FIRST SYMPTOM protocols with ABILITYusa which EMPOWERS leaders and staff to immediately seek assistance for symptom management to prevent progression to injury.
- Train staff to Protocols and EMPOWER Immediate referral to ABILITYusa for identifying specific SAFETY TRAINING needs then re-training work practices and body mechanics. In addition, applicable interventions would be included such as Laser and applicable stretch, motion-release movement activities that the employee should utilize at the work-site. These visits prevent injuries.
- IF A MUSCULOSKELETAL WORK INJURY OCCURS – FIRST AID by ABILITYusa
- Regulatory compliant First Aid strategies include: Observation; Counseling; Correcting employee work procedures; identify needed ergonomic refinements; Added Training needs identified; Thermal applications- Hot or Cold including Thermal Deep Tissue Laser; Non-Rigid supports, wraps, elastic bandages, taping and Band Aids; Massage, Instructions regarding preventive movements specific to the issues.
- WORK IS THERAPEUTIC: Use modified and transitional duty to keep the person working, wherever possible. ABILITYusa testing can guide duty assignments.
- If progression to Medical Care required
- Assure physician knows the physical demands of the position;
- Assure physician is informed of the modified and transitional duty program available than can benefit the employee by keeping them working.
- ABILITYusa testing can identify what task levels can safely be performed during the transition and healing process. This prevents lengthy delays in progression.
- Inform Physician ABILITYusa testing is utilized for Return to Full Duty evaluations. This assures the employee is safe to perform essential duty tasks.
- Testing also provides objective data to evaluate what safe accommodations might or might not be applicable, if ultimate abilities do not meet basic task performance criteria.
- Testing helps clarify objectively, safe functional status as needed for HR determinations.
- WHEN is ABILITYusa FITNESS FOR DUTY TESTING Applicable
- When an employee is having difficulty in a given job, possibly age-related decline.
- When it is unknown what the physical capabilities of a returning employee, after non-work-related illness or injury are.
- Protect the employee, don’t enable return to work without knowledge of the safe abilities of the employee. Don’t allow a non-work related condition from becoming a work-related condition, due to inadequate strength to perform essential duties of the position.
- Empower employees to be an active part of the corporate safety program, always alert to risks and to report them.
- Empower employees to communicate a FIRST SYMPTOM immediately, enabling interventions, training and resolutions.
RESULTS of a MUSCULOSKELETAL HEALTH Program:
Happier, Healthier Staff with Improved Moral and Productivity
Decreased Injuries, Absenteeism, Staff Turnover and Costs