How to Avoid Them
When furnishing healthcare facilities, managers and purchasing agents sometimes focus on costs while overlooking something equally important – ergonomics. And with the growing movement towards Quadruple Aim healthcare – making provider and staff well-being as important as clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction and costs – the need for ergonomically correct furniture is even more critical.
Soft tissue sprains and strains, commonly called musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), are the most prevalent injuries for healthcare workers, brought on by muscle, tendon, ligament and nerve stress. Healthcare workers need furniture to reduce injuries from repetitive motions, poor patient handling, awkward postures and clinician burnout.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), U.S. hospitals alone saw three times the number of work-related injuries and illnesses than all other U.S. industries combined in 2020. MSDs accounted for more than 50% of reported injuries and illnesses by nursing assistants.
In healthcare, MSDs may result from overexertion related to the manual lifting, moving and repositioning of patients, residents or clients (i.e., manual patient handling). In addition to frequent lifting and repositioning patients, the increasing weight of patients to be lifted due to the obesity epidemic in the United States is a significant risk factor.
To assist with ergonomic concerns, the healthcare furniture industry has solutions.
By using adjustable-height medical chairs and tables, providers can change patient positioning for easier treatment access, avoiding the possible back and neck strain from having patients in fixed-height furniture. Patients require less assistance and feel safer on height-adjustable medical furniture.
Custom Comfort Solutions
Custom Comfort Medtek’s adjustable-height medical recliners provide seat and arm height repositioning along with intermediate or full Trendelenburg placement. Custom Comfort Medtek’s recliners, and many of the company’s other adjustable furniture options, are available in two styles.
- Pneumatic assist
- Battery-powered or electric
Blood Draw Chairs & Beds
Custom Comfort Medtek height-adjustable blood draw chairs and beds give phlebotomists and other healthcare professionals easy access to patients without unnecessary bending or stooping, reducing the risk of back and neck problems. Custom Comfort Medtek offers styles that can accommodate larger patients as well.
Custom Comfort Medtek height-adjustable exam tables lower for easy patient access and then safely rise so providers can comfortably perform a check-up or procedure. Custom Comfort Medtek exam table options include the Comfort Zone Power Table with an 800-pound weight limit.
When providers don’t have to stretch and strain to reach a patient, they’re less likely to be injured. Adjustable backrests on exam and treatment tables allow patients to remain comfortably in seated or supine positions, so provider injuries are less likely.
Patient Centric Solutions
Adjustable Back Treatment Exam Tables
Custom Comfort Medtek’s 4-position back exam tables include models with cabinets, shelves and drawers. The exam tables are also available in bariatric sizing.
Portable Donor Beds
Portable donor beds include a 4-position reversible backrest to access patients from either side.
Counter-height medical stools with adjustable backrests allow providers to move freely in an exam room while remaining ergonomically sound.
Solutions to Minimize Injury Risk to Healthcare Professionals
Mobile Trays, Carts and Cabinets
Custom Comfort Medtek’s multipurpose mobile trays, carts and cabinets provide ample room for laptops, printers, phlebotomy supplies and medications and include easily accessible locking cabinets.
Other components that can provide ergonomic support include:
- Locking casters to ensure furniture will not move independently.
- Foot rings to help with ergonomic foot placement.
- Flip-up armrests to make it easier for caregivers to access patients.
- Bariatric sizing to provide patients and caregivers with safe and secure seating.
For more information about Custom Comfort Medtek’s furniture options, call (800) 749-0933 or visit our contact page.
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