Each year there are over 2.5 million workers hurt in workplace accidents in the United States. Workers in all employment sectors, including healthcare, retail, manufacturing, and transportation, are affected by workplace injuries. Whilst many workers are hurt through repetitive stress injuries, others are involved in more serious incidents. Falls, collisions, and lacerations are among the most common workplace injuries workers sustain.
Many people who suffer workplace injuries may need medical care, and time away from work. Each injured worker misses an average of 11 work days due to their injuries. If you are more likely to be injured at work, there are some crucial steps you should take to protect your rights and your health.
1. Address your physical needs.
Have medical professionals assess your condition as soon as possible, should you be involved in an accident. You may be in shock, and you may not develop symptoms for a few hours. If you were involved in a collision with a work vehicle, you could have suffered from whiplash, and although it is one of the most common injuries people receive in car crashes, symptoms can take a day or more to manifest. A loss of mobility in the neck, neck and shoulder pain, and headaches are common symptoms of whiplash, but may not appear right away.
Medical professionals can refer you for tests to assess the extent of your injuries. Hairline fractures may not be detected in a physical exam but can be picked up and diagnosed from an x-ray.
Get a medishare quote to determine how much your health insurance will cost. You may need to extend your coverage to include physical therapy, occupational therapy, dental care, and optical care, due to your injuries. If your injuries cause a short-term or long-term disability and you need to leave your job, you may lose the health insurance plan provided by your employer.
2. Address your legal needs.
Employees have legal rights. Take time to have your medical situation evaluated and get a clear picture of your current and future medical needs. Each state across the country has a fair share of work accident lawyers, and you never have to look far to get help. If you can, then search locally. For example, it only helps to contact a work injury lawyer Raleigh NC based, if you also work in North Carolina, since the best lawyers for the job know that some laws are specific to North Carolina and won’t apply to other states. Lawyers who specialize in personal injury law are familiar with your legal rights and the process of filing workers’ compensation claims. They can guide you through every step of the process to ensure you have the best chance of receiving fair compensation.
Work injury lawyers are also familiar with employer liability. If your employer did not supply suitable protective equipment or failed to address safety issues noted in inspections, then there may be legal grounds to file a lawsuit as the accident was the result of negligence on their part. Personal injury lawyers offer a free consultation, which means you can discuss your case at no cost. These lawyers can advise you of your legal options and tell you what compensation you may be eligible to receive. You can use this information to make an informed decision about your legal needs.
3. Address your personal needs.
Workplace accidents cause more than physical injuries. You may suffer from mental health issues stemming from your accident. Many people who have been in car crashes develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD,) which means it can be too stressful to drive or ride in a vehicle after an accident. PTSD can make it difficult to return to the site of your accident, or engage in the same types of activities you were performing when you were injured.
You may suffer from anxiety and depression. In serious cases, depression can lead to thoughts of suicide.
After your accident, talk to a mental health professional. A therapist can determine if you are affected by emotional or mental health issues stemming from your accident, and help you develop strategies that will help you cope with your symptoms.
You may also need short-term or long-term help to perform routine tasks. For example, if you have a broken arm or leg, you may need to hire people to mow your lawn and clean your home. It’s important to realistically assess your needs after your accident and seek help. This can prevent you from aggravating your injuries. Your attorney may also be able to seek compensation for the costs you incur if you need to hire people to perform tasks while you recover.