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Nurses in Massachusetts concerned about workplace violence

Some jobs are inherently more dangerous than others because the work an employee is required to do carries various risks. However, while it is apparent to both the employee and employer that the job carries more risks, this does not take the burden off the employer to provide additional training and safety in the work environment. If an employer fails to address any health and safety concerns, this could result in serious workplace injuries.

Although the work objective of nurses is the care for the health and wellbeing of patients, nurses in Massachusetts recently raised their concerns regarding worker safety. Workplace violence has become a growing issue for nurses, and nurses are advocating for legislation to require health care employers to put a greater emphasis on worker safety in hospitals.

With regards to workplace violence, the nurses advocating for this safety issue are referring to the violence against nurses by patients. This stemmed from incident involving a nurse who suffered neck and back injuries after she was choked by a patient who was hiding in an alcove in the psych unit of the hospital. Nurses are now seeking to minimize this danger by developing programs to prevent workplace violence and assign a crisis manager to work through these situations.

When a worker is injured on the job, it is important to address the cause of the incident. Employers should consider the health and wellbeing of their employees when implementing safety programs in the workplace. Additionally, when a worker suffers an injury at work, that worker could claim workers' compensation benefits. These benefits could help the employee recover from the workplace injury, helping them cover expenses such as medical bills and lost wages.

Source: Wcvb.com, "Nurses seek protection from workplace violence," Andy Metzger, Feb. 4, 2016

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