Charlotte Health Worker Injury Attorneys
Help when health and hospital workers are hurt on the job in North Carolina
Hospital and healthcare employees face some of the biggest potential risks in all job industries. When safety is not prioritized, or a single mistake is absentmindedly made, a hospital worker could suffer a serious injury or contract a dangerous and possibly incurable illness. Workers’ compensation benefits should be made available to you in such a case.
Have you suffered a serious injury or illness as a healthcare professional? You deserve workers’ compensation benefits to keep you financially afloat while you recuperate, but an insurance provider might not agree. At Price, Petho & Associates, our Charlotte workers’ compensation attorneys work hard to make health workers like you receive fair treatment by employers and insurers, securing the benefits and coverage you need after an injury or accident.
What would you like to know?
- What hazards do health and hospital workers face on the job?
- What benefits am I entitled to after an injury at work?
- What if my Charlotte workers’ compensation claim is denied?
- Is there a workers’ compensation attorney near me?
What hazards do health and hospital workers face on the job?
If you work in the healthcare industry, either as a medical professional or administrative staff member, you know the environment can be busy 24 hours a day, seven days a week. All of the moving “gears” of a hospital increases the chances of basic safety procedures from being pushed aside for urgent matters. This problem exists on top of the already-hazardous nature of a care center or hospital, given the nature of the industry.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports hospitals are one of the most hazardous places to work. In 2019, hospitals “recorded 221,400 work-related injuries and illnesses, a rate of 5.5 work-related injuries and illnesses for every 100 full-time employees. This is almost twice the rate for private industry as a whole.”
Some of the most common injury risks healthcare workers face on the job include:
Slips, trips and falls
Slip and falls occur often among healthcare workers, whether from spills on wet floors, unsteady patients, or medical equipment causing tripping hazards. These can cause sprains, strains, broken bones, or head and back injuries. Hospital and health workers experience these accidents at a higher rate than workers in other industries.
Exposure to disease
Healthcare workers also risk exposure to infectious diseases through a variety of ways, including direct contact with patients, handling contaminated medical equipment, and through airborne transmission of viruses and pathogens. They can also contract diseases or conditions via exposure to patient blood or bodily fluids.
Another common cause of healthcare worker injury is overexertion. These are things like muscle strains, sprains, and other musculoskeletal injuries that result from heavy lifting and moving or repositioning patients. Performing these tasks over and over can cause serious injuries over time, or as a one-time traumatic injury.
Because healthcare settings are full of hazardous chemicals, used to sterilize instruments, deep clean rooms, preserve specimens, or wipe down work surfaces, employees can suffer harm after prolonged or even just one exposure. These types of injuries can include chemical burns, respiratory illnesses, and even certain cancers.
A hazard unique to healthcare and hospital workers, puncture and stab wounds from needles, scalpels and other sharp objects can cause serious and concerning injuries. When these instruments aren’t disposed of properly, the fast-paced and chaotic hospital setting can result in a sharps injury, causing potential contraction of blood-borne viruses like hepatitis B, hepatitis C, or HIV.
Finally, hospital and healthcare workers also face a serious risk of physical assault or violence on the job. Because medical professionals deal with individuals with mental difficulties as well as physical injuries, they may also deal with violent and combative patients. Depending on the nature of their injuries, workers who’ve experienced an assault may need even more time off to recover due to the emotional trauma of the attack.
It is important to remember that you can file for workers’ compensation benefits for your injuries, as long as your injury or illness occurred as a result of your job duties. Generally, the only exception to claiming workers’ compensation in North Carolina is if you caused your own injuries through intentional recklessness, such as using drugs or alcohol while on the job.
What benefits am I entitled to after an injury at work?
North Carolina workers’ compensation law provides the following benefits for workers injured on the job:
- Medical expenses, including medical bills related to your injury, prescription medications, diagnostic tests, and professional services from doctors and specialists.
- Lost wages, if doctors determine you will not be able to return to your job due to the severity of your injuries. These include total disability if you cannot return to work at all, or partial disability if you can return to work, but not at the rate of pay prior to your injury.
- Disfigurement benefits, if your accident and injury leaves you with permanent scars or damage to your internal organs.
- Vocational training, if your injuries are extensive enough that you cannot return to your current job and must take on another position. This training can include job search assistance, on-the-job training, or help with tuition expenses.
- Death benefits, in the tragic event you lose a loved one to a work accident or injury.
Securing these benefits, however, may not be as easy as it seems. Even one mistake filling out your application can result in a denial or delay of benefits. In cases like these, it’s crucial to have an experienced Charlotte workers’ compensation attorney on your side. Price, Petho & Associates can help.
What if my Charlotte workers’ compensation claim is denied?
If your healthcare workers’ compensation claim is denied, you have the right to appeal your claim. In North Carolina, appeals have four levels:
- A formal hearing with the Deputy Commissioner from the North Carolina Industrial Commission
- A full appeal with the North Carolina Industrial Commission
- The North Carolina Court of Appeals
- The North Carolina Supreme Court
Our attorneys work to ensure you secure your benefits as soon as possible, with the least fight possible. However, we are prepared to take your battle to the state Supreme Court if necessary. We can assist you with all the proper forms and deadlines to ensure your claim is technically correct.
Is there a workers’ compensation attorney near me?
Price, Petho & Associates is located at 1420 Elizabeth Ave in Charlotte. We also maintain offices in Rockingham and Rutherfordton for your convenience. If you are unable to come to us, we can make arrangements to visit you at home or in the hospital.
Charlotte workers’ compensation lawyers advocating for injured employees
Workers’ compensation claims for hospital and healthcare workers can be unexpectedly complicated and problematic, especially if the responding insurance company finds reason to doubt the validity of your claim. To eliminate the guesswork and legwork of your claim in one easy step, talk to the attorneys at Price, Petho & Associates today. We’re dedicated to securing maximized compensation for our clients and knowing we have helped make someone’s life comfortable again after an unfortunate accident. Call 704-372-2160 or fill out our contact form to schedule a consultation. We serve clients in Charlotte, Rockingham, Rutherfordton, North Carolina, and South Carolina.