Ala. Nursing Home Facility to Work with OSHA to Abate Ergonomics Hazards

August 25, 2004

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that the Jacksonville Health and Rehabilitation L.L.C. headquartered in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, has entered into an agreement to cooperate with the agency by adopting specific measures to reduce back and shoulder injuries for employees who lift nursing-home residents at the company’s Jacksonville, Ala. facility.

“This agreement reflects the company’s commitment to eliminate serious musculoskeletal injuries in a cooperative manner,” Roberto Sanchez, OSHA’s area director in Birmingham, said. “We look forward to working with Jacksonville Health and Rehabilitation to eliminate injuries as the company takes proactive steps to eliminate hazards and better protect its employees.”

The company has also agreed to ensure the appropriate use of mechanical lift-assist devices, and update employee-training programs.

The agreement settles a citation issued by the OSHA Birmingham area office to the nursing facility. During an inspection, the agency reportedly found that the facility’s injury and illness records included a number of musculoskeletal injuries sustained by nursing assistants that resulted in lost work time and restricted work duty.

The company has also agreed to develop and implement policies regarding maintenance and use of mechanical lift and transfer devices, and to evaluate the use of other equipment designed to lower the rate of musculoskeletal injuries among direct care staff.

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