Earning a living as a Florida nurse is not for the faint of heart. In addition to logging long hours and performing emotionally taxing work, you probably spend long lengths of time on your feet, and you may, too, find that you are working while the rest of the world is asleep. Nurses also face unique occupational hazards that differ from those faced by workers in other industries, which, in many cases, can lead to serious illness and injury.
Per the U.S. National Library of Medicine’s National Institutes of Health, one major risk you face when you work as a nurse is the risk of exposure to infectious diseases or blood-borne pathogens. Simply working around others who are in poor health presents certain health risks, with some nurses developing tuberculosis, severe acute respiratory syndrome and other conditions when they work around infected patients. Meanwhile, administering shots, drawing blood and suturing wounds can also expose today’s nurses to potentially deadly blood-borne diseases.
Nurses also run the risk of suffering injuries when patients become violent, which, regrettably, is a relatively common occurrence in many hospitals and treatment settings. Nurses who work in emergency room environments are particularly likely to experience violence and suffer related injuries while on the job.
Nurses also face numerous other occupational hazards due to their positions, including the risk of chemical exposure. Disinfectants and substances used in chemotherapy treatments are just a few of the substances that can endanger nurses after exposure. Persistent aches and pains, too, are quite common among nurses, many of whom suffer back, neck, shoulder and other injuries from moving patients and other heavy loads.
This information about the occupational hazards today’s nurses face is educational in nature and not a replacement for legal advice.