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Safety tips for nurses

There are a number of steps nurses at New Jersey health care facilities can take to reduce the likelihood that they will be injured on the job. Hand washing is one of most basic and importance practices for avoiding infection.

Nurses should also use lift and transfer equipment both for moving patients and lifting heavy items. It can be cumbersome to use this equipment every time, but it is also easy for a nurse to be injured without it. Wearing good shoes, paying attention to the environment and practicing good ergonomics can also help prevent these types of injuries. Nurses should not hesitate to ask for help or help one another when dealing with a potentially violent patient.

They should get immunized against the flu as well as pathogens such as measles, tetanus, hepatitis B and other infectious diseases they are likely to come into contact with at work. Needles should not be recapped, and safety features around using needles should be in place. Nurses should also be careful to wear personal protective equipment whenever appropriate. This may include mask, gloves and eye protection. Getting enough sleep reduces the likelihood of errors and is better for the immune system. It is also part of the overall self-care nurses should practice that includes nutritious meals, exercise and seeking professional help such as therapy when needed.

Nurses have a high rate of on-the-job injury, and like most other workers, if they are injured on the job, they are usually covered by workers' compensation. These benefits can help cover the cost of medical care and other expenses while a person recovers. However, workplaces sometimes make it difficult to apply. Nurses who are injured in the workplace may want to talk to an attorney about how to file the necessary paperwork and protect themselves from any retaliation.

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