If you’ve been hurt at work, you need to take immediate steps to protect yourself.
Injuries at work can do physical damage, but they can also hurt your emotions, including your confidence and trust. You might decide to file a personal injury lawsuit, or seek another type of employment.
No matter what the situation is, there are some steps you can take to get through the process more easily. This guide will show you exactly what you need to do.
How Likely Is It That You’ll Get Hurt at Work?
It’s tempting to believe that you would never get injured at work. You might work in a very safe industry, or be extremely careful and vigilant when you’re on the job. However, anyone can get hurt at work, no matter how careful they are.
Here are the most common workplace injuries.
1. Slips and Falls
Slips and falls can sound like no big deal. However, if you fall just slightly wrong, you can easily get injured.
This extremely common type of workplace accident can happen in any job environment. Water or damage to the floor, debris, and obstacles can easily cause a slip and fall accident.
Slips and falls result in everything from broken bones to head injuries. In the workplace, these accidents are often easily prevented, too.
2. Manual Activities
If your job involved lifting, carrying, pulling, pushing, or other manual activities, you can easily get hurt at work.
Injury can happen even when these activities are minor. However, if the work is difficult or strenuous, an injury is that much more likely.
3. Moving Equipment
If you drive for work or use moving equipment, that’s another common cause of injury. You can get hit by a moving vehicle or a moving component. Unbalanced loads can cause a vehicle to turn over. Driving accidents are an incredibly common type of injury, and many of them happen at work.
4. Other Workplace Hazards
There are many other types of unique workplace hazards, depending on your job. You might be exposed to electricity, fire, chemicals, and other risk factors.
What to Do If You Get Hurt at Work
Workplace injuries are more common than you’d think, and it’s important to know what to do. If you get hurt at work, follow these steps to minimize the damage and protect yourself.
1. Seek Medical Help
It’s always important to seek medical attention as soon as possible after an accident at work. Even if it seems like a minor injury, you need medical care to make sure it doesn’t turn into something worse.
Rather than trying to stay and finish out the workday, let your employer know what happened and seek out a medical professional to accurately assess the injury.
2. Report Your Injury
This step goes hand-in-hand with Step 1. You need to report any injury at work to your supervisor right away. Make it clear that the injury happened on the job, and was caused by your work activities.
Different states have different laws governing how soon you need to report an injury at work. However, it’s best to make the report as soon as possible, so you don’t forget.
3. Make Sure There’s a Company Accident Report
You need to be sure your supervisor properly prepares a company accident report after your injury.
If your supervisor refuses to file one, you’ll need to write a letter detailing exactly how and when you were injured, and give it to your supervisor, as well as keeping a record for yourself.
When you give them the letter, keep a record of when you handed it off. Try to get them to sign a receipt stating that they got the letter, if possible.
4. Get a Copy of the Report
If an accident report was filed as it should be, get a copy of it and store it safely. If you prepared your own letter instead, keep a copy of that one.
5. Gather Your Contacts
Gather your relevant contacts related to your injury. This includes your supervisors your doctors, insurance representatives, and anyone else who was involved in the accident.
6. Get the Right Medical Care
At first, you may need emergency medical help. However, as you seek treatment for the aftermath of the injury, you’ll need to make sure the medical care will be covered by a workplace injury claim.
In some states, the doctor you get care from needs to be approved by your employer in order to be covered. Check what the laws are before booking an appointment with your ordinary physician.
7. Give Your Doctor the Details
Once you figure out the proper way to get medical care that’s covered, make sure to give your doctor or healthcare provider all the details about how you got hurt at work. If you don’t think they’re paying close enough attention to how your job caused the accident, take some notes and give them a letter containing all the details.
8. Follow the Medical Advice
Follow any directions your healthcare provider gives you carefully. Otherwise, your employer can claim that you made things worse by not seeking the proper care.
9. Write Down Workplace-Related Medical Advice
If your doctor says you can no longer do certain tasks at your job, have them write it down and give you two copies. Give one copy to your supervisor, and keep one copy with you.
10. Send the Bills to the Right Place
Make sure your healthcare provider is sending all the bills to your employer. Don’t pay for any medical care yourself after you’ve been injured at work.
11. Seek Better Care
If your medical care is denied by your employer, or if the employer-approved doctor doesn’t give adequate care, you have a legal right to seek the medical attention you need.
In this case, you may need to hire a lawyer to help you get the care you’re entitled to.
Have You Been Hurt at Work?
There are many laws in place to protect people who get hurt at work. If you were injured on the job, don’t worry – just follow these steps.
When it’s time to seek medical care, chances are good you’ll need physical therapy. For great physical therapy, check out our services today.