The home health industry needs workers. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts an increase of 1,208,800 new home health aide and personal care aide positions between 2016 and 2026. Finding workers to fill those positions may be difficult, leading to worries of a major worker shortage. But despite the need for workers, there’s also a need for smart hiring practices. To keep workers’ compensation claims down, employers must take precautions.
Workers’ Compensation Claims
Home health workers face risks that can lead to injuries, and these injuries can lead to workers’ compensation claims. These risks include:
- Musculoskeletal injuries, often the result of lifting or maneuvering patients
- Automobile crashes, which can occur when workers drive from one patient’s home to another
- Assaults, which can occur if patients or others become violent
- Other accidents, such as tripping and falling, which can occur because workers are constantly visiting different homes with unique layouts and risks
These risks can be made worse if workers are not physically capable of performing essential duties, such as lifting or maneuvering patients, or if they use poor techniques when doing heavy lifting. Dangerous driving habits and criminal tendencies – including filing fraudulent claims – can also result in expensive workers’ compensation claims.
Although these risks cannot be eliminated entirely, careful hiring practices can reduce them.