Every worker in each field is susceptible to injury in their workplace. However, health workers face a higher risk of injuries in developing many disorders such as back pain, muscle pain, and soft tissue-related pain known as musculoskeletal disorders. This population is experiencing higher rates of occupational accidents compared to other industries, consequently becoming a serious public health concern. The need for immediate attention to this problem can be justified by health impacts and other related outcomes related to these events, including absences. The rates of injuries suffered at work among nurses and nursing assistants in the United States were 13.6 cases and 19.2 per worker, respectively (McCaughey et al., 2016, p. 2). The purpose of this project proposal is to find innovative ways of reducing secondary occupational injuries among healthcare personnel. An integrated solution is presented in this report to provide healthcare facilities and institutions with a foundational framework for the prevention of secondary workplace accidents. The proposed solution consists of several interventions, including staff employee training and education, financial incentives, and legislation and enforcement, promoting a strong safety culture, embedding ergonomics interventions, strengthening exercises, fitness training, and compliance inspections.
Unintentional injuries among workers in different sectors and industries are a major public health concern. Workplace injuries cause serious health impacts on the already vulnerable populations and other related outcomes related to these events, including absences (Apostolico & Shendell, 2016). Musculoskeletal injuries are the primary cause of accidents that necessitate absence, accounting for 34 percent of cases of absenteeism reported by nurses and nursing assistants (McCaughey et al., 2016, p. 2). A workplace injury is unavoidable, but the impact and the reoccurrences can be prevented to protect the workers from long-term disabilities (Zahra, Elmoaty Sheha, & Elsayed, 2020). This disorder affects the muscles, nerves, and tendons, and the most common symptom is back pain.
Working as a care provider involves many movements, especially during emergencies, and manual handling of patients, which is considered the critical contributor to this public health problem. Moving patients requires several postures such as bending and stooping, physical strength and manual force, and a lot of movement (McCaughey et al., 2016). These activities can cause damage to the muscles and the skeleton. Such events increase with the length of practice. In addition to that, health workers are exposed to several infectious diseases because of the nature of their work. Handling clients without personal protective equipment (PPE), such as masks and gloves, exposes healthcare providers to infections. This report proposed an innovative solution for reducing and preventing secondary injuries in the healthcare sector. An extensive review of the empirical literature is undertaken to find the most effective way of addressing and improving workplace safety concern.
Goals and Objectives
This project proposal aims to find innovative ways to minimize the incidence of secondary occupational injuries and reduce the related health impacts. The specific objectives of the project are:
- To identify workplace injuries that health workers sustain and find prevention measures.
- To find a solution to prevent the recurrence of workplace injuries
- Develop effective tools and strategies to help injured workers avoid subsequent injury
- Develop effective programs and supports to assist healthcare workers who sustained injuries while on practice to return to full health.
There is a growing concern over workplace injuries in the healthcare and social assistance sectors. The occupational injury rates of nurses and nursing assistants working in public healthcare facilities were estimated at 13.6 cases and 19.2 per workers, respectively (McCaughey et al., 2016, p. 2). Consistently, a recent study of insurance claims related to subsequent occupational injuries among New Zealand workers established that 58% and 31% of the participants reported at least one and multiple injuries in 24 months, respectively (Harcombe, Davie, Wyeth, Samaranayaka, & Derrett, 2018). These statistics prove that healthcare practitioners are at a greater risk of sustaining an injury at work. Therefore, there is a strong need to develop innovative strategies and solutions to help curb this problem.
The proposed solution combines employee training and education, financial incentives, and legislation and enforcement of workplace safety standards. Other interventions include promoting a strong safety culture, embedding ergonomics within organizational processes, strengthening exercises, fitness training, and compliance inspections on injuries in the workplace. This integrated approach is justified by the fact that occupational injuries are complex and multifaceted (Pietilä, Räsänen, Reiman, Ratilainen, & Helander, 2018). Figure 1 below demonstrates that accidents at work are attributed to many factors.
Education and training can help healthcare workers recognize and avert potential injuries at work. A practical session should be carried out once in a while for the workers and even medical students. It will provide them with the basic knowledge on how to recognize, handle, and avert hazards that might cause injuries at work (Teufer et al., 2019). They should also be educated on how to take care of themselves when managing patients with chronic and infectious diseases. They should learn to cover themselves and avoid contact with patients to avoid getting infected. Training and education enhance prevention of occupational injuries and hazards (Teufer et al., 2019). Therefore, this intervention will promote safe work practices, risk reduction, proper utilization of protective equipment, and compliance with safety measures.
Furthermore, providing health workers with PPEs is an evidence-based strategy to avoid future injuries. These tools will help reduce the force and movement of the workers reducing muscle work. Health facilities should provide masks, gloves, face goggles, isolation gowns, and sanitizers to the workers when handling patients to reduce infections. Health and safety policies and a strong workplace safety and safety culture will be considered to enhance organization wide safety compliance. These guidelines will heighten injury prevention efforts and ensure employers take responsibility for the workers (Apostolico & Shendell, 2016). The initiatives will help address physical and psychological risks at work.
Moreover, ergonomic Interventions, such as increasing the number of health workers, can help mitigate the risk of ergonomic hazards. Instead of putting pressure on one health worker, the workload can be divided among many workers. It reduces the burden placed on an individual worker. Regarding lifting, having several workers can help out, so they are not lifting much load. People get injured more often because they lack a helping hand due to a shortage of workers. It will be of great help to the employment sector as more workers will get employed. Observing physical fitness can help avoid muscular and skeletal disorders. Other strategies that have demonstrated positive outcomes include sstrengthening exercises, fitness training, financial incentives like insurance premium discounts, and compliance inspections on injuries in the workplace.
Data and Discussion
This proposal will enhance health workers’ safety within their areas of service. The project will meet all the requirements needed to protect the workers from secondary injuries (Pietilä et al., 2018; Harcombe et al., 2018). For instance provision of tools to health workers such as PPEs will protect the health worker from contacting communicable infections. The provision of sliding sheets for carrying sick patients will reduce the strain on the health workers. It will lower their chance of getting the muscular skeleton disorder.
In another instance, development and support such as health and safety policies guarantee the workers’ safety. In case of an injury, this policy will ensure that the employer takes accountability. The programs can include counseling and psychological help. It may be useful when a traumatized personnel needs help and support to return to total health. Educating them once in a while on how to protect themselves while at work will promote long-term prevention. Maybe these injuries are experienced because they don’t have complete knowledge of how to handle themselves. Practical sessions, especially on taking patience and training on protecting themselves, should be carried out. Therefore, effectively implementation of this proposal will benefit health workers and the society.
The proposed project targets workers in the in healthcare and social assistance sectors. They include nurses, doctors, physicians, pharmacists, radiologists, lab technicians, and social workers. Healthcare facilities will be required to take ensure implementation of the suggested occupational health and safety promotion interventions and compliance with other relevant OSH standards. Part of the project solution is the requirement for personnel to work safely and adhere to workplace safety standards. It takes less than a year to implement this proposal since every solution will be carried out efficiently by the health ministry.
It can be implanted by funding hospitals and health facilities financially. The funding will help in purchasing more equipment such as the sliding sheets and the personal protective equipment. The ministry can also implement the proposal by employing more workers to reduce an individual worker’s workload. I believe this proposal is worth investing in, and its implementation will create a better working environment for the workers. It, in turn, will benefit society.
Apostolico, A. A., & Shendell, D. G. (2016). Injury surveillance and associations with socioeconomic status indicators among youth/young workers in New Jersey secondary schools. Environmental Health, 15(1), 1-9.
Harcombe, H., Davie, G., Wyeth, E., Samaranayaka, A., & Derrett, S. (2018). Injury upon injury: A prospective cohort study examining subsequent injury claims in the 24 months following a substantial injury. Injury Prevention, 24(6), 437-444.
McCaughey, D., Kimmel, A., Savage, G., Lukas, T., Walsh, E., & Halbesleben, J. (2016). Antecedents to workplace injury in the health care industry: A synthesis of the literature. Health Care Management Review, 41(1), 42-55.
Pietilä, J., Räsänen, T., Reiman, A., Ratilainen, H., & Helander, E. (2018). Characteristics and determinants of recurrent occupational accidents. Safety Science, 108, 269-277.
Teufer, B., Ebenberger, A., Affengruber, L., Kien, C., Klerings, I., Szelag, M.,… Griebler, U. (2019). Evidence-based occupational health and safety interventions: A comprehensive overview of reviews. BMJ Open, 9(12), e032528.
Zahra, N. A., Elmoaty Sheha, E. A. A., & Elsayed, H. A. (2020). Low back pain, disability and quality of life among health care workers. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Research and Allied Sciences, 9(2), 34-44.
Report Proposal Template
|REPORT PROPOSAL TEMPLATE|
|Name: (author of proposal)|
|Peer Reviewer name:|
|#1 Report purpose and problem |
What is the purpose of this proposal? What will it do or achieve? Briefly describe the problem that this report addresses. What is the problem? Who is affected by it? Why is it a problem? How is it currently being addressed? Be sure that the context is also clear. Where is this problem encountered, specifically? E.g., “in an office” is insufficient. Provide specific details about context.
|The project aims to find innovative ways of preventing recurrences of occupational injuries. Secondary injuries are currently addressed using occupational safety and health prevention standards. This problem is encountered in all workplaces across all sectors. In the healthcare, it specifically happens in offices.|
|#1Peer Reviewer comments: |
Is the purpose clearly and precisely stated? Is the problem clearly identified? Is the context clearly articulated? Does this clearly state who is affected by the problem? Does this explain how or why this is a problem? Are you convinced this is really a problem? Is this realistic in scope? That is, can this problem be realistically addressed in a short report? Identify both strengths and weaknesses of the proposal here.
|#2 Audience |
Who is the audience for your report? What are their concerns regarding this issue? How are they likely to respond to your proposal? How will you adapt your message to address this audience?
|The target audience of this project are healthcare workers and management of healthcare facilities. The major concerns are the high costs, health impacts, absences, and other negative consequences related to injuries at work. Health workers are likely to welcome this propose since it would enhance their safety at work. However, the management may exhibit some resistance because of the substantial investments required to implement the proposed interventions. The message will be designed to align with the needs and expectations of the target audience.|
|#2 Peer Review comments |
Has this adequately identified the audience, its concerns, and likely response? Will the message be adapted effectively for the audience?
|#3 Proposed Solution |
What is your proposed solution to this problem? Explain how this solution is realistic and feasible. Will the solution actually solve the problem? How do you know? Can you think of other alternative solutions that might be viable?
|The proposed solution is a combination of several interventions, including staff employee training and education, financial incentives, and legislation and enforcement, promoting a strong safety culture, embedding ergonomics interventions, strengthening exercises, fitness training, and compliance inspections. The solution is both realistic and feasible because it adopts a wider view of the research problem. The solution will solve the problem because it provides an integrated approach. Implementation of single interventions is the other viable alternative.|
|#3 Peer Review comments |
Are you convinced? Is the solution clearly a response to the problem? Can you think of possible objections to this proposal?
|#4 Meets proposal requirements |
Briefly explain how well this proposed solution meets the solution requirements identified in the call for proposals. See assignment description: (1) Addresses a funding priority, (2) Delivers an innovative solution, (3) Demonstrates value for money, (4) Is relevant to and supported by employers, supervisors, workers and others in Ontario workplaces, (5) Addresses current and emerging health and safety system challenges, (6) Solves the workplace health and safety problem effectively, (7) Delivers a timely solution (can be implemented within one year), and (8) Is scalable (that is, be capable of being delivered across the province). Can you think of any other criteria to identify that might support your proposal?
Be brief. At this stage in the proposal, you do not require concrete support for each of these, but you should have some sense of how well your proposal will meet these requirements.
|The proposal addresses a funding priority because on the high cost of occupational injuries. Reducing and preventing this public health concern is core to the delivery of safe and quality care. |
The solution is innovative because it adopts an integrated approach to occupational injury prevention and management, unlike conventional approaches which have a singular focus.
The solution demonstrates value for money because reducing occupational injuries will help avert negative outcomes such as employee absences, compensation claims, and turnover, consequently increasing profits.
The project is relevant to and supported by employers, supervisors, workers and others in Ontario workplaces because occupational injuries affect each of these groups.
The project addresses safety which is a current concern facing health and safety systems.
The project provides an effective solution to injuries experienced at work, which is a serious workplace health and safety problem.
The solution can be implemented within a one-year timeframe.
|#4 Peer Review comments |
Does the solution seem to meet the criteria quite well? What are its weaknesses? Where are you not convinced? Where do you need to see more research evidence and support? Can you think of any other criteria that might be used to evaluate proposed solutions?
|#5 Visual Devices |
How will you design your report to enhance its visual appeal, its persuasiveness, and its likelihood of winning over the reader? Identify at least two specific visual devices you will incorporate into your report. One of these must be an original visual device used to summarize or present data.
|The report will include graphical representations to enhance its visual appeal. Some of the visual tools include particularly graphs, figures, and tables.|
|#5 Peer Reviewer comments |
Are these appropriate? Would you find them helpful? Can you suggest any others that might help or be more appropriate?
|#6 Research Sources |
Identify three authoritative research sources (i.e., peer reviewed) you will use to support your analysis. Provide properly formatted APA citations for these references. Provide hyperlinks/URLs as well.
|#6 Peer Reviewer comments |
Without looking up these resources, do they seem authoritative? Do they seem relevant to the problem and solution? Can you suggest any other sources that might be consulted? Are they cited accurately? Do you see any citation errors?
|Peer reviewer comments: Final feedback |
Provide any additional comments you feel would strengthen the final assignment. Briefly identify strengths and possible areas for improvement.