Work-Related Nursing Home Injuries Explored by North Carolina Research Institute

Elderly Lady.jpgIn 2004, the Research Triangle Institute in Durham, North Carolina collected data from nursing home aides and certified nursing assistants regarding their work schedules, training, and overtime. The purpose of the data collection was to determine if there was a link between those variables and increased injuries on the job in nursing homes.

The data was then compiled into a study and analyzed by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The study is entitled, “Work-Related Injuries Among Certified Nursing Assistants Working in US Nursing Homes” and it was written by Galina Khatutsky along with three others.

The study found that risk of injury was significantly associated with three factors: (1) mandatory overtime; (2) multiple jobs in the last 5 years; (3) being 30 years old or younger. Those aides who received more training and who were required to work less overtime were less likely to be injured on the job. There was also come connection between the numbers of reported injuries and whether the aides worked in environments where they felt respected. If there was some level of respect for the aides, the aides were less likely to report being injured by the patients in the nursing home.

Most of the injuries suffered by the aides came from patients who were aggressive. Some of the injuries were also associated with having to lift those patients who cannot lift themselves. Most aides, however, reported having access to lifting equipment and being able to use the equipment regularly to assist them in their jobs.

As a result of this study, the researchers are recommending that certified nurse assistants (CNA’s) receive more comprehensive training and more support during the first few months on the job. They also recommend that CNA’s be extensively schooled on how to handle difficult patients as these seem to be the primary cause of the injuries to the workers and also that nursing homes reduce the amount of overtime that the employees are required to work.

The publication of this study puts the nursing home industry on notice that some of its own practices may be contributing to injuries on the job. As such, the industry may now be prone to negligence claims by injured workers or patients who have been injured as the result of fatigued employees. If you or someone you know has been injured in any way and believe that you may have a personal injury claim, contact the Charlotte personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC ( at 704-370-2828. As experienced personal injury lawyers, they will work hard to secure the recovery you deserve.

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