Workplace Injuries That Land You in Hospital

stigma and barriers

This article provides some of the key learnings from a report out of the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare on trends in hospitalised injury in Australia 1999-2015.

Workplace injuries that are presented in this report include falls, hand injuries and coming into contact with moving objects.

This article covers:

  • Workplace injuries as result of a fall, being struck and eye injuries
  • How males are more likely to suffer an injury in comparison to females, with 20-24 year old males most at risk
  • The non-fatal burdens of workplace injury
  • What our clients have been telling us about the nature of workplace injuries

Workplace Injuries as a Result of a Fall

Fall injury cases that required hospitalisation make up 41% of all hospitalised injury cases and saw an increase of 10% in 2014-15 compared to the previous year. In 50% of the cases fractures were the result of a fall.

As an adult, the older you become the more likely you are to fall. Men between 20-50 years old are more likely to fall than women.

Falls on the same level from slipping, tripping and stumbling accounted for more than one-quarter of all fall injuries (28%).

55,737 people slipped, tripped or stumbled and fell!

Fall Injuries Where Males Outnumber Females by More Than 3:1 Were:

1. Other fall on same level due to collision with, or pushing by, another person;

2. Fall on and from a ladder;

3. Fall on and from scaffolding; and

4. Fall from, out of or through building or structure.

A whopping 5,256 people fell off a ladder in the five year period.

There is one solution that can help – Tap into Safety.

Whether looking to deliver induction training in the classroom, online or using smart devices, a simple hyperlink integration is available to the Cloud-hosted software.

Tap into Safety offers interactive and engaging work health and safety training.

The software has been designed to support workers with low literacy or minimal English language capabilities.

The Platform uses real workplace photographic, panoramic examples that workers relate to because they show their work sites or typical examples of their work areas, rather than gifs and cartoons depicting workplace hazards e.g. manual handling examples of lifting a box in an office setting.

The training is delivered using a micro-learning methodology and can even be accessed by sub-contractors with their competencies verified before they step foot on site.

There is pre-built content focusing on Falls in Commercial Construction and Residential Construction already available to simply upload and use immediately.

If you’d like to know more please click through or try a free online demo.

Workplace Injuries as a Result of Being Struck

The workplace is full of risks where people can come into contact with inanimate mechanical forces, where they are unintentionally struck, crushed and contacted by objects.

These injuries also include being caught between moving machinery, exposure to noise and vibration, high-pressure hoses, power tools, projectiles and falling objects, and hand and eye injuries.

Construction sites, for example, have workers encountering these hazards on a regular basis.

Cases due to inanimate mechanical forces made up 14% of all hospitalised injury cases.

Coming into contact with inanimate mechanical forces was the second largest contributor to hospitalised injury.

20-24 Year Old Males Most at Risk

The report reveals that males accounted for 80% of the injuries with 50,000 people hurt in the five year period.

  • Wrist and hand injuries were the most common (49%);
  • Injuries included open wounds and fractures; and
  • Striking against or struck by other objects accounted for 16% of injuries due to inanimate mechanical forces.

Injuries increased by 0.7% in 2014-15 compared to the previous year.

Recommended Reading: The National Injury Prevention and Safety Promotion Plan

Eye Injuries

Approximately 3,000 eye injury cases occurred at the workplace and the Australian Institute of Health and Safety report that this number is likely to be an underestimate because information on activity while injured was not reported for 69% of cases.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that in 2010, 285 million people were affected by visual impairment globally; 39 million of these were blind and 246 million had low vision. Approximately 1.6 million people globally were estimated to be living with blindness due to eye injuries.

Recommended reading: Adelman & Raducu, 2016.

Analysis of 11,320 eye records from the United States Eye Injury Registry (USEIR) database concluded that eye injuries sustained during a fall had a poor prognosis, with every second person with an eye injury remaining blind.

Recommended reading: Kuhn et al, 2006.

Non-fatal Burden of Workplace Injuries

Workplace injuries can have a long-term impact on a person’s life. The non-fatal burden is a measure of healthy years lost due to ill health.

In 2011, Australians lost 84,260 years of healthy life due to the impact of living with injury.

Total disease burden in Australia in 2011:

  1. Cancer (19%)
  2. Cardiovascular diseases (15%)
  3. Mental and substance-use disorders (12%)
  4. Musculoskeletal conditions (12%)
  5. Injuries (9%)this figure consists of 69% for males and 62% for females

The non-fatal burden of injury was more than twice as high in males, who lost 60,432 years of healthy life compared with 23,828 years for females.

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