THE LEADER in Work Injury Management & Prevention Systems

Work Solutions Insight May 2017 Newsletter
Work Solutions Insight May 2017 Newsletter
DSI Provider Spotlight
Employer Solutions
Ministry Employer Solutions industrial rehabilitation staff specializes in injury prevention and treatment of work and non-work related injury. The focus of safely returning the employee to work starts at the moment we begin treatment.
You can learn more about Ascension here .  
Our department has been with DSI since its inception.  Several of us knew and worked with Susan and Dennis Isernhagen for many years prior to that (we recall cruises with them on Lake Superior in Duluth at their annual conferences!).  Our department has shown significant growth and development and much of that is attributable to the DSI tools we use.  Over the past 6 years we have grown from 7 therapists to 22 and currently provide formal onsite services at over 30 companies in Eastern, Central and Northern Wisconsin.  We also provide and perform onsite services at many other companies where regular contracted onsite services do not exist (such as FJD/FJT development, preventive education etc.).
Job Function Matching®, FCA Training
Bowling Green KY
September 14 - 16, 2017

  Please contact Brandy for more information
Article Excerpt
  Safe Patient Handling Laws and Programs for Health Care Workers
Richard Weinmeyer, JD, MA, MPhil
AMA Journal of Ethics
April 2016, Vol. 18,
Number 4, 416-421 
There are now 10 states that have laws protecting health care workers- Texas, Washington, Rhode Island, Maryland, New Jersey, Minnesota, Illinois, New York and California. Another state, Ohio, will provide long term interest free loans for nursing homes to purchase and install equipment and for staff training. The emphasis is primarily on nurses, nurse assistants and orderlies but also includes other health care staff who must physically assist, transfer or transport patients. 

The main cause of injuries in health care workers continues to be reported as musculoskeletal disorders involving the back neck, arms and legs that occur when patients are manually repositioned, lifted or moved.  These activities have become significant health risks to health care workers.  Three recent changes in how healthcare is delivered contribute significantly to the increasing risk: 

  • Since 1998 the physical demands on nurses and hospital staff have been intensified by an ongoing shortage of nurses and other allied health professionals. It is estimated there could be as many as 260,000 unfilled nursing posts by 2025.
  • The rising obesity rate in the United States means health care workers are caring for patients who are heavier as well as more acutely ill.  It is not uncommon for healthcare workers to routinely maneuver patients weighing 300 pounds or more whose limbs alone can weigh up to 70 lbs.
  • More hospital procedures and illnesses are being managed in outpatient centers, reserving traditional hospital beds for the most serious health conditions that require round the clock care from staff. 

The outcomes of health care facilities in compliance with the laws for safe patient handling are impressive.  Statistics include workers’ compensation claims reduced by 43-57% and reductions of up to 80% in lost work days. 

It is also reported that the return on investment in these states is recovered in less than 5 years.  The largest health care provider in western New York made a full return on its $2 million investment in 3 years and saved $6 million over a 7 year period.  

There are considerable benefits to implementing a safe patient handling program in any health care facility.  The reduction of injury rates and their related costs, increasing patient care safety and recognizing the value of the physically demanding nature of the working as a nurse or a health care worker.
You can find full article here .
   DSI's CEO, Ginnie Halling PT has a new blog. You can check it out  here 
Legal Update
  Resolved Cases Under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act
From the EEOC Website

Roadrunner RediMix: (D. N.M) resolved on 4/26/12 by Phoenix District Office- Charging Party was a cement driver with neck impairment. He requested that his employer allow him to be exempt from cleaning the inside of the concrete barrel of his truck once a year, or in the alternative, to use the jackhammer, which was used to remove the excess concrete, in a downward motion, as opposed to the typical upward, overhead motion. As a result, Defendant sent Charging Party home on unpaid leave, then terminated him. The consent decree compensated the Charging Party with $80,000 in monetary relief. The decree also enjoins Defendant from engaging in further disability discrimination and requires the company to implement discrimination policies and procedures, provide training to its managers and employees, and monitor and investigate discrimination complaints.

Stevens Transport: (N.D. Tex.) resolved 6/7/12 by Dallas District Office - The Commission alleged that Defendant discriminated against Charging Party by failing to hire him because of his disability, paraplegia. Under the Consent Decree, Defendant will furnish Charging Party $50,000 in monetary relief.

Disability Discrimination & Reasonable Accommodation
The law requires an employer to provide reasonable accommodation to an employee or job applicant with a disability, unless doing so would cause significant difficulty or expense for the employer.

A reasonable accommodation is any change in the work environment (or in the way things are usually done) to help a person with a disability apply for a job, perform the duties of a job, or enjoy the benefits and privileges of employment.

Disability & Medical Exams During Employment Application & Interview Stage

The law places strict limits on employers when it comes to asking job applicants to answer medical questions, take a medical exam, or identify a disability.

For example, an employer may not ask a job applicant to answer medical questions or take a medical exam before extending a job offer. An employer also may not ask job applicants if they have a disability (or about the nature of an obvious disability). An employer may ask job applicants whether they can perform the job and how they would perform the job, with or without a reasonable accommodation.

Disability & Medical Exams After A Job Offer For Employment
After a job is offered to an applicant, the law allows an employer to condition the job offer on the applicant answering certain medical questions or successfully passing a medical exam, but only if all new employees in the same type of job have to answer the questions or take the exam.



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