A 2018 PHI report noted the injury rate for home health aides in 2016 was 116 in every 10,000 workers. These individuals play an essential role within the healthcare field, but it can be a dangerous job.
Understanding the common injuries in this field is essential to ensure the well-being of these dedicated caregivers.
The physical demands of assisting clients with mobility, transferring them from beds to chairs and helping with daily tasks can lead to strain on the aides’ muscles and joints. Back, shoulder and neck strains are common issues that can arise due to improper lifting techniques and inadequate ergonomic practices.
Repetitive strain injuries are also a concern in this profession. The frequent need to assist clients with mobility and perform tasks, including dressing and bathing, can lead to conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome and tendonitis.
Slips, trips and falls
Navigating clients’ homes can increase the risk of slips, trips and falls. Every work site is different, with the potential for various hazards, including uneven surfaces and clutter. It is advantageous to take an inventory of a new location prior to beginning work to avoid such risks.
Infectious disease exposure
Close contact with clients and their families exposes aides to the risk of contagious diseases. Proper infection control measures, including hand hygiene and personal protective equipment, are essential to minimize the risk of infections spreading.
Home health aides must prioritize their own well-being while on the job and watch for common hazards. An injured worker cannot provide the care necessary for clients.