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Lake County Workers' Compensation Law Blog

Why are rural workers more likely to get opioids than urban ones?

Anyone who is prescribed an opioid for pain after a workplace injury needs to be aware that they can be highly addictive. The opioid crisis in this country has many doctors taking new precautions when prescribing and renewing prescriptions for these powerful painkillers.

However, a recently released study from the Workers' Compensation Research Institute found that people who live in rural areas are more likely to be prescribed an opioid after suffering a workplace injury than those in urban areas. The independent group, which conducts research for employers, insurance companies and labor unions, looked at injuries in 27 states, including here in Illinois.

Meat processing plants pose many hidden hazards

Meatpacking facilities nationwide, including Illinois, are hazardous work environments. Even after improvement, employees in this industry continue to suffer a variety of on-the-job injuries. If you work in such a facility, you might be smart to learn about all the potential injury risks and take precautions.

The hazards start with threats posed by animals before the stunning process, by the stun gun, or while hoisting 2,000-pound carcasses. Crippling back, wrist, hand and arm injuries seem to be par for the course on the processing line, and so are cuts and lacerations. Cleaning solvents and heat-sealing machines can cause burns, and improper lockout/tagout procedures can lead to severed hands or fingers, not to mention the fall risks on slippery floors.

Home care workers face unique injury, abuse risks

As our country's population ages, more and more people require some type of ongoing medical care or at least assistance with aspects of daily living. Increasingly, people are hiring home health care providers so that they can continue to live in the familiarity and comfort of their own homes rather than move to a nursing home or assisted living community.

Many home care workers are nurses. Others are social workers. They have a variety of backgrounds, training and licenses. In 2016, some 5 million Americans were cared for by providers working for approximately 12,400 home health agencies.

Filing claims and appeals after an injury at work

Injuries at work are difficult to cope with because you might want to continue working, but you may not be able to. One thing that injured workers need to remember is that they are going to have to take care of themselves so that they don't exacerbate the injury. This is often a challenge, especially when others are counting on you to be there for them. Teacher or nurses, for example, might have a real internal struggle about having to leave work for medical care.

We know that you didn't intend to suffer an injury at work. Unfortunately, these things happen, and you just have to do what is best for you at the time. You might need to go to the emergency, but you may be able to make an appointment with your doctor or visit an urgent care center. Make sure that you do have an official diagnosis and that you understand the treatment plan so that you know what is going on.

Appellate court rules against injured worker

The Illinois workers' compensation program helps injured workers to receive the medical care that they need to heal from their work-related injuries. There are other facets of the program that are also available to some beneficiaries. These depend on their circumstances. Workers have specific requirements for the program. A recent ruling by an Illinois appellate court highlights this.

The case at the heart of the ruling involved a man who worked for more 30 years for a beverage distribution company. He suffered a back injury when he was stocking a cooler in 2011. This injury was a turning point in his career. He wasn't able to return to work because the injury exacerbated a degenerative condition that multiple doctors noted was common with age.

Workers' compensation has different types of benefits

Workers who are injured often face very serious medical issues, especially if the incident involved the head, neck or spine. Sometimes, the problems they are facing are permanent and will impact them forever. This has to be taken seriously because the person might not be able to return to work. We know that most workers enjoy the satisfaction of putting in a full day's work and then being paid for it. Most of them will attempt to return to work, but some might find out that they can't do their job duties.

When an employee is injured, they will turn to the workers' compensation system for benefits. These include medical care coverage for all medical costs related to the accident. It can also include replacement wage benefits and possibly some vocational rehabilitation programs. We work with injured employees to ensure they get the benefits they are entitled to receive.

Machinery entanglements can cause significant employee injuries

People who work around machinery with moving parts must ensure that they are being as safe as possible. One way that you have to do this is by ensuring that you don't have any loose clothing or even long hair that might become entangled in the machines. Some industries are more prone to having these types of incidents. Almost four in 10 of all injuries in the agriculture industry are entanglement-related.

There are many injuries that can come from being entangled in a machine. The most serious thing that can happen is death. Others including serious bruising and tissue damage that is caused by crushing or pressure. It is also possible that a body part will be amputated, either partially or fully.

Knowing what caused a work accident can help with prevention

Safety authorities say a significant number of workplace injuries nationwide, including in Illinois happen as the result of human errors. They say the prevalence of injuries caused by unsafe actions by employees exceeds those resulting from unsafe conditions by far. This underscores the importance of compliance with prescribed safety regulations.

Are you inclined to find something to blame for incidents that cause work-related injuries? Finding the actual causes might be time well spent, and it could prevent injuries in the future.

Workers' compensation protects injured workers and employers

When you suffer an injury at work, you need to ensure that you get medical care if you need it. You shouldn't have to worry about what your employer will do because retaliation for filing a workers' compensation claim is illegal. You also shouldn't worry about trying to seem tough. Getting the medical care you need can help you find out what you need to do to heal. This is important since you probably want to get back to work quickly.

The workers' compensation system is here to provide protection for injured employees and employers. When you file a claim, the money doesn't come directly from your employer. Instead, it comes from their insurance company. Employers in Illinois must pay for workers' compensation coverage, which is considered a normal business expense. We want people to remember that their employers shouldn't try to dissuade them from seeking out medical care or other workers' compensation benefits.

Neck injuries can range from minor to very serious

Injuries to your neck can make doing even the simplest tasks complicated. This is because the neck controls the movement of your head, but it is also affected by the motions of your shoulders. If you are injured at work and your neck is one of the impacted areas, you might be in for a long road to recovery.

It is possible that a neck injury can come from an accident, but it might also come from issues like improper head positioning and cumulative trauma. For example, a mechanic who has to work under a vehicle might have to position their head in a way that strains the neck muscles. This might lead to trauma in the area.

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Hannigan & Botha, Ltd.
505 E Hawley St.
Ste. 240
Mundelein, IL 60060-2473

Toll Free: 866-533-6590
Phone: 847-388-0874
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Mundelein Law Office