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Atlanta Social Security Disability Law Blog

Traumatic brain injuries can qualify for SSDI

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are on the rise in the United States and are increasingly becoming a problem. From 2006 to 2014, emergency room visits, hospitalizations and deaths associated with TBIs rose a staggering 53 percent. The effects of a TBI can be far reaching. They can affect motor skill, memory, thinking, emotions and more.

With 1.7 new cases of TBI each year and about 5.3 million Americans living with a disabilitycaused by TBI, it's no wonder that the Social Security Administration (SSA) recently added TBI to its list of impairments covered by Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).

Rising temperatures also increase work-related injuries

Most Georgia residents welcome summer with open arms after a long, rainy winter. Between sunny days with family or nighttime adventures with friends, summer offers an array of activities for everyone.

Unfortunately, it also offers an array of opportunities for outdoor workers to get heat-related injuries. It's especially true for construction workers, farmers, firefighters and other full-time employees.

Lifts can help nurses to safely move patients

People who work in nursing homes and hospitals are facing the very serious risk of back injuries due to having to lift patients and help them with mobility issues. Finding ways to minimize the risk of these injuries has to be a priority for these employers.

In some settings, there might not be overhead lifts available to help move the patients. The chance of injury is much higher in facilities that don't use them, and there is still the need for something to help workers lift patients.

7 tips to improve delivery driver safety

Delivery drivers face hazards on each shift they work. Not only do they have to worry about personal safety, but they need to be attentive drivers as well.

By understanding some of the more common risks, employees and employers can work together to ensure drivers make it home after each shift.

    5 tips to improve retail worker safety

    The retail industry might be one of the safer industries in which to work, but this doesn't mean that workers don't face some hazards. In fact, there are many issues that come with these jobs that might not be immediately recognized. Instead, some people assume that they don't need to follow safety rules because they feel like they aren't facing immediate danger.

    Paying attention to everything going on around them and working to make things as safe as possible can help everyone. Employers must do their part because they can't place the liability on the employees. Still, everyone will need to play a role in the safety plan.

    • Keep the floors clean. Slips, trips and falls can lead to employee or customer injuries. Spills should be cleaned immediately. If that isn't possible, signage should warn people about them. Cords must not be strewn about the floor and anything that falls should be picked up promptly.
    • Use caution with sharp objects. Some retail workers, including stockers, might have to use box cutters and other sharp tools. Using proper procedures can help to prevent cuts. Workers should be shown the proper ways to use these tools and should always put them up with the blade secure and covered.
    • Practice safety around equipment. Forklifts and pallet jacks have an important role in the retail industry. People who use these machines should be trained and certified on their use. When there are others around, a spotter is necessary, especially if they are working in the public locations of the store.
    • Focus on body mechanics. Cumulative trauma injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome and lower back pain, are fairly common in retail. Stretching and using proper body mechanics can help to alleviate these injuries. Additionally, workers should seek medical care at the first sign that something is amiss since these injuries get worse as time progresses.
    • Control the stress. Many workers, an estimated 25 percent, note that work is their top source of stress. It isn't easy to reduce stress associated with work. Employers might be able to reduce employee stress by providing them with appropriate tools for their job duties and a predictable schedule.

    Risks are present for workers in all industries

    Being injured on the job is something that workers hope they never experience. No matter what industry you are in, you are at risk of being injured. This can come from an accident, but it is also possible that you will suffer one due to repetitive motion.

    There are many types of incidents and injuries that can occur. Knowing some of the more common ones can help employers and employees to improve safety.

    • Overexertion injuries: Trying to do your best at work is a good thing, but don't push yourself too hard. Activities like carrying, pushing, pulling and lifting can lead to injuries that are painful and costly.
    • Slipping or tripping: Workplaces often have items on the floors and sometimes have wet floors. Workers who are exposed to these can suffer injuries if they slip or trip, even if they don't fall. Some injuries can come from attempting not to hit the ground.
    • Falling objects or from heights: Working at heights above the ground or having items up there can lead to accidents. Workers need to have fall arrest devices and all objects placed above the ground should be secured to prevent incidents.
    • Moving machines: Some businesses, such as factories, have moving equipment all around. Making sure the employees are trained on using these and that safe practices are in place can help to stop some injuries, such as workers being crushed by machines or being entangled.
    • Workplace violence: It isn't easy to foresee workplace violence, but there must be a practice in place for monitoring suspicious activity and reporting it. A plan must also be set for what happens if there is an incident of this nature.
    • Repetitive motion injuries: Workplace ergonomics are essential safety tools. This includes using movements and tools that help you to avoid muscle strain and odd body mechanics. These injuries are troublesome because the symptoms don't come on all at once. Instead, the start as nuisances and progressively get worse.

    Patient transfers and mobility issues can lead to worker injuries

    Nurses, patient care technicians and other caregivers have to handle some difficult duties. Some can lead to considerable injuries. One involves heavy lifting that comes with transferring patients from one space to another, such as a wheelchair to a bed. In some cases, simply trying to adjust the patient's position on a bed to prevent pressure sores is the cause of the problem.

    Overexertion is one of the most common causes of injuries in the health care field. These injuries can lead to musculoskeletal disorders, which are seven times more common in the health care industry than in all other industries.

    Unloading semitruck trailers is dangerous work

    All workers need proper training and tools to work safely. Many jobs include the duty to unload semitrucks. This is even the case for some retail jobs. It is imperative that these workers understand how to safely do this job. Part of their safety depends on the shipping company's ability to load and secure the cargo properly.

    Loads that aren't balanced and properly secured may shift during the unloading process. This can crush workers, lead to them being struck by items and cause them to suffer serious injuries. When workers, employers and shipping companies work together, reducing the number of incidents should be possible.

    Yes, you can still get workers' compensation if you get fired

    Getting hurt on the job is a bad situation for almost everyone. You suddenly have to worry about how long it will take you to return to your job. You also have to worry about the medical bills that you incur while treating your injury. That's a lot of expense right at a time when you probably don't have much income.

    Thankfully, in most cases, you can qualify for Georgia workers' compensation benefits after a workplace injury. Those benefits can pay you a portion of your lost wages if you are temporarily disabled. They can also cover the cost of medical treatment and rehabilitative care.

    Hospitals must do more to protect employees

    Hospitals should be safe places that can help people to heal after injuries or illnesses. Unfortunately, workers in these facilities are often at risk of suffering from the exact things that the patients are being treated for.

    While it is true that hospitals have taken steps to make this work environment safer, there is still a long way to go. Here are some points that you might find interesting about the safety of hospital employees:

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