Workers Compensation Programs

Nursing Homes Workers Comp Issues

The health care industry is considered one of the more dangerous industries to run, and because of the growing elderly population, nursing homes have become major care providers to the elderly within the health care industry. About 1.5 million elderly and disabled Americans reside in nursing homes today, and nursing assistants provide the majority of their care. Nursing homes are among the top 10 industries for musculoskeletal problems, which is the major cause of worker absenteeism, workers’ compensation claims, and worker injury and illness.

 

Higher rates of musculoskeletal injury have been reported among nursing home workers compared with rates among workers in other occupations. Injuries to workers at nursing homes happen quite frequently and a severe injury can lead to an unusually long furlough and may even be cause for a lawsuit. What is workers compensation insurance? The answer is that it is the policy required to ensure workers get proper treatment when they suffer a work-related injury.

 

Slips, trips and falls among top concerns

 

When exhausted after a long day of work, a nurse or attendant may become susceptible to tripping or falling due to an obstruction, or something as simple as a wet floor. Because of this very serious issue, workers comp insurance is the best solution for averting a financial crisis for owners and managers of these businesses.

 

Nursing home employees working in direct-care facilities perform many physically taxing activities, such as lifting heavy loads, working in awkward postures, and transferring residents in and out of beds. Additionally, manipulating the technology that supports patient care is often physically straining as well. Any increase in worker injury rates is likely the result of increased exposure to hazardous conditions coupled with diminished recovery time between these exposures.

 

The workforce may be exposed to a variety of situations where injuries can occur, not least of all in the handling of patients. They should be instructed to request help anytime they feel they are incapable of performing a certain duty on their own. Owners understand that the type of duties that their staff are asked to perform can lead to injuries if not handled in a safe manner. The likelihood of accidents and injuries should be addressed, since the safer the environment, the less the chance of a claim being required. What is workers compensation insurance? Perhaps the most effective way to aid workers.

3 Facts About Workers’ Compensation Insurance for Small Business

Owning a small business can be overwhelming at times. You have many complex issues to navigate. Workers comp insurance is one of those ever-shifting issues that you must deal with if you have even one employee. It is a requirement of most but not all states. Legislation and related laws change often. Here are some facts about workers’ compensation that will hopefully make navigating the murky waters a little easier.

  1. It is a necessary expense. Even if your state does not require you to provide this type of insurance, you still need it. If an employee is injured on the job, you are accountable to your state’s workers’ compensation laws. Workers comp insurance provides injured staff with medical coverage, rehabilitation coverage and lost wages while they are recovering. It also protects your business from negligence lawsuits.
  2. The benefits outweigh the costs. Not having workman’s compensation insurance can cost your business a lot of money. States level stiff fines on noncompliant businesses. The cost of medical bills, lost wages, lawsuits or potential death benefits could put you out of business.
  3. It helps you attract and retain the best employees. Benefits and coverage for employees are one of the top things talented individuals look for when considering a position. The risk of being injured on the job and having to shoulder the overwhelming cost of medical care is a fear many individuals face.

Give your employees and yourself the peace of mind that workers comp insurance provides.

Making Workplace Safety A Priority

 

Employers who emphasize and make safety a top priority usually have better success when it comes to reducing injuries in the workplace. This will also be of great help when it comes to reducing the cost for workers compensation insurance. One way in which employers can help obtain the assistance of their workers in accomplishing this is by instituting a program whereby employees are rewarded for their part in keeping the company injury-free.

 

For example, the employer can sponsor a monthly lunch for employees when no injuries occur over the course of a stated period of time. If the company finds that they have achieved a higher success rating from these efforts, supervisors should also be rewarded for following through with safety training and meetings that helped contribute to this success, Most workers compensation brokers see this as a great way for organizations to reduce the cost of premiums.

 

Employees should be fit for duty when reporting to work

 

Arrange for a “fitness for duty” physical with an occupational medical provider, especially for employees having positions that are physically demanding. The company can greatly benefit from creating this requirement. By sharing the job description with the clinic and describing the physical components of the job, the clinic can test the employee to ensure that he or she is physically able to do their job at all times.

 

Employers can yield some very positive results, and may even prevent future injuries from occurring. Also, for an employee making use of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for a serious health condition that has developed, employers should consider requiring that a fitness-for-duty certification cover the employee’s ability to perform the essential functions of their job.

 

However, any requirement that an employee obtain a fitness-for-duty certification must be clearly explained to the employee at the time the employee requests the FMLA leave and should be set forth in the employer’s written policy. This requirement should appear in the employee handbook and all employees should be made aware of this at the time they are hired. This plan can be discussed with workers compensation brokers when policy discussions take place.

 

Having adequate amounts of insurance and a comprehensive, well-managed workers’ compensation program can do more than simply save an organization financial woes; it can help keep employees safer and more engaged, and the business more productive.

Saving Money on Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Workers’ compensation is a fact of business life for the overwhelming majority of employers in the United States. In fact, for many companies, worker’s compensation insurance premiums make up a significant line item on many balance sheets. While a variety of factors influence how much a company must pay for coverage, smart business executives work with an experienced workers’ compensation insurance broker to save as much as they can.

Keeping Costs Low

To control costs, worker’s compensation insurance specialists typically recommend employers take the following three steps:

  • Start a Safety Program
  • Utilize a Return-to-Work Incentive
  • Join an Organization

While there are many strategies for saving money on workers’ compensation insurance premiums, these three suggestions are often critical in keeping costs low.

Safety Programs

To lower worker’s compensation costs, employers often implement safety programs. While these programs differ between companies, successful ones work to identify and mitigate workplace risks and safety hazards.

Return-to-Work Incentives

Generally, the quicker an injured employee can return to work, the cheaper the workers’ compensation insurance claim. Thus, employers that incentivize returning to work often have lower premiums than those that allow employees to stay off the job for a long time.

Organizations

Finally, by working with a skilled workers’ compensation insurance broker, some employers save money by joining a professional employer organization.

Contractors and Construction Insurance in Wayne, NJ

Being an active participant in the construction industry means that you fully realize that safety must be the number one priority for both workers and visitors to the worksite. Construction Insurance in Wayne, NJ is vital for all contractors to have in place. This policy will provide coverage in the event that anyone is injured on the job site.

Examining hiring practices

The construction industry is made up of individual workers, each contracted to provide services under distinct terms, from subcontractors to hired employees, and from labor brokers to independent contractors. There are different circumstances with each type of paid worker. With subcontractors, it’s generally advised that you, as a contractor, draw up a contractual agreement while ensuring that participants are licensed, bonded, and insured before hiring them. They bear equal responsibility for the project and may be liable for any issues if a client deems that the work is subpar, or in the event that the job is not completed.

Hired employees, however, don’t fall under the same requirements. For example, when hiring employees, the contractor is required by law to withhold taxes, pay wages, benefits, and comply with all employment laws. They are also required to provide workers comp insurance in the event of any on-the-job injuries. The contractor may also opt to solicit a broker to help provide labor. They will have a similar relationship with these workers who are also considered employees during the course of performing work for the contractor’s company.

Hiring independent contractors means that the contractor pays them directly but isn’t responsible for paying benefits or withholding taxes. There are strict tax reporting requirements in place for working with independent contractors that must be followed to avoid breaking any rules or laws regarding this type of employee, which could result in costly fines if not adhered to.

The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) require that contractors provide a safe workplace for their employees, one free from any recognizable hazards. Things such as tools, scaffolding, debris, and any large machinery and trucks constantly moving back and forth all pose concerns due to the risks involved in working in these conditions. In any case, Construction Insurance in Wayne, NJ should, without question, be used to provide necessary benefits, along with protecting the interests of everyone involved in the project.

Protecting Your Staff with Workers Compensation Programs

You know that the stakes are awfully high for workers in nursing homes simply for the fact that they face the risk of injury due to all of the strenuous duties and tasks they perform every day. These injuries can often be the result of activities performed in their regular service to patients residing at their facility.

Various nursing home Workers Compensation Programs allow you to provide insurance to your clients that face the concern of losing staff to injuries, sometimes severe enough that they may miss work for weeks or even months. This coverage is not only mandatory, but it provides the type of financial and medical support those injured individuals will rely on during their recuperation and, with any luck, a subsequent return to the workplace.

Types of injuries covered by workers comp insurance

Provided that the injury occurs at work, or while on the job, most are covered under any standard workers comp claim. Musculoskeletal injuries are rather common, and these can often occur as a result of a simple slip and fall accident. For example, falling on a floor that was recently mopped can lead to sprained ankles, torn muscles, and even bruised tendons.

Nurses and other staff responsible for carrying residents, often in a fragile state and especially at awkward angles, can easily become injured. Such activities can result in back strains, herniated discs, and over-extension of certain muscles, plus there is the additional risk for major back problems and other musculoskeletal problems.

Exposure to pathogens and other infectious agents

The American Nursing Association estimates that as many as two out of three nurses report being accidentally stuck with needles at work. This raises concerns about the possibility that a syringe that may contain viruses, bacteria, or other pathogens could puncture the skin, and this could quite possibly put that nurse at risk for serious illness. Nurses are also asked to handle biological waste, as well as perform work with medicines and chemicals that could cause an adverse reaction.

There are also concerns about psychological issues developing. This could be due to long hours, lack of natural sunlight at some facilities, and even poor eating habits, all of which could produce any number of psychological ailments, including anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and even problems related to sleeping.

Therefore your clients operating nursing homes need the valuable protection of Workers Compensation Programs to deal with all types of issues related to the health of their staff.