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Simple Guidance to Avoid Work-Related Musculoskeletal Issues in Nursing Homes

Work-related musculoskeletal issues are a daily concern for nursing home operators and healthcare staff. Musculoskeletal injuries sustained in the workplace can cause long-term pain leading to lost productivity and significant job dissatisfaction. However, work-related injury can be reduced or prevented with appropriate interventions and training. Implementing simple guidelines for care home workers can make a significant difference in achieving positive outcomes. Such guidance is very simple to implement including:

1. the provision of staff training in the correct selection and use of mechanical aids

2. the reduction of manual handling by correct selection and use of mechanical aids, wherever possible

3. the provision of staff training in moving and handling practices

4. the maintenance of sufficient staff levels to allow lifting and moving work to be safely carried out on each and every shift

5. the provision of staff training on how to lift and move residents safely

6. a regular review of moving and handling practices and identified improvements applied

7. the limitation of manual lifts to be performed by each health worker per shift

8. opportunities for staff to regularly stretch and exercise, wherever possible

9. regular health and safety assessments to identify risks

10. clearly written health and safety policies and appropriate notices on display (ie key lifting points to observe)

The basic principles behind such guidance are sound common sense and implementation does not have to involve excessive on-going costs. Once the initial staff training investment is absorbed, the savings to any business will be reflected over time due to the reduction in lost man hours due to sickness absence due to injury. It will also pay dividends in creating a happy work environment with good staff morale.

Effective Solutions Reduce the Risk of Injury

An effective solution can only be achieved if everyone within the care home fully understands their duty to themselves, their colleagues, and their residents. This means healthcare workers must apply the knowledge gained from a reputable training provider on a daily basis. Healthcare workers must also observe the guidance provided within the work environment by their employer.

Good Lifting, Moving and Handling Techniques Reduce Injuries

Basic lifting, moving, and handling techniques are designed to significantly reduce musculoskele