Recent findings published in the International Journal of Nursing Studies show that registered nurses (RNs) who have recently entered the workforce have a significantly higher risk of workplace injury during the overnight and overtime shifts.
The report states that RNs have over a 60% higher chance of being injured on the job during overtime hours. While the odds are lower during graveyard shifts (44%), this is still a major challenge for hospitals and medical institutions. Of the 1,744 nurses that took part in the study, nearly 80% of them worked half-day shifts, accepted overtime 60% of the time and nearly half worked overnight.
The study concluded “that certain scheduling and shift characteristics are significantly associated with injury risk in newly licensed nurses.” Needle stick injuries happened more often in 12 hour shifts with 8 hours of overtime per week, while sprains and strains were more frequent in shifts totaling more than 40 hours a week. However, the repoprt does admit that the study doesn’t take into consideration how much safety training and equipment was provided to the nurses prior to their shifts and available at the time of the injury.
Ultimately, the study echoes what researchers and nurses have been saying for years: licensed RNs must be provided with better training, equipment and assistance.
If you are an RN and have been injured while on the job, you may be entitled to benefits from your employer. For more information on work related injuries or to schedule a consultation to review your legal options, contact the personal injury team at Blume Forte Fried Zerres & Molinari today. We can be reached at (973) 635-5400.