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What Is Ergonomics In Healthcare?

What Is Ergonomics In Healthcare
Applying Ergonomics in Nursing to Your Career – Nurses and healthcare administrators have an important impact on the lives of countless patients. To effectively complete their job duties, healthcare professionals should consider the importance of ergonomics in nursing.

Establishing and carrying out safety standards, both small and large, is an essential aspect of delivering patient care and minimizing workplace injuries and illnesses. If you are interested in the practice of ergonomics and want to pursue a career in healthcare, consider AdventHealth University Online’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN-BSN) or Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Administration,

Learn more about how these programs can prepare you for a successful career as a nurse or healthcare administrator. Recommended Readings

  1. How to Become a Hospital Administrator
  2. Inspirational Quotes for Nurses to Help Boost Mood and Motivation
  3. Registered Nurse Responsibilities


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Elements of Ergonomic Programs”
  2. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employer-Reported Workplace Injuries and Illnesses — 2019”
  3. U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Employer Responsibilities
  4. U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Healthcare Wide Hazards: Ergonomics

What is ergonomic in health care?

Definition: Ergonomics is the application of scientific information concerning humans to the design of objects, systems and environment for human use. Ergonomics comes into everything which involves people. Work systems, sports and leisure, health and safety should all embody ergonomics principles if well designed.

What is an example of ergonomics in the healthcare setting?

Hospitals provide many opportunities for ergonomic stressors to manifest into injuries or repetitive stress disorders. Major ergonomic issues in the hospital settings include patient handling and awkward postures. Use this page to learn more about how to mitigate these stressors.

  • Hospital employees are exposed to injuries such as muscle and ligament strain and tears, joint and tendon inflammation, pinched nerves, herniated discs and other injuries from ergonomic stressors during handling, transferring and repositioning of patients.
  • OSHA recommends minimizing the manual lifting of patients in all cases and eliminating lifting when possible.

This can be difficult to accomplish, so it is recommended that employees make use of proper assist devices and equipment whenever possible. Devices such as mechanical lift equipment, shower chairs, lateral transfer devices, sliding boards, gait belts with handles, wheelchairs, repositioning devices, etc., are examples of engineering controls that should be utilized whenever possible.

Administrative controls, such as proper lifting and material handling training and development of written patient care plans should be created and implemented to make the best use of employees’ time and abilities. Sufficient staff should be on hand to make tasks requiring multiple people (such as some patient repositioning and transfers) feasible.

Many common tasks for the hospital worker can create awkward postures, which include twisted, hyper-extended or flexed back positions, reaching, or lateral or side bending. Awkward postures can increase forces on the spine and in joints and can contribute to muscle and tendon fatigue and/or joint soreness.

  • More muscular force is required when awkward postures are used because muscles cannot perform efficiently.
  • Good work practice recommends avoiding awkward postures while working.
  • Try to perform your work while minimizing twisted or bent postures.
  • Engineering controls can be used to reduce some awkward postures.

Making use of equipment such as patient lifts, transfer devices, adjustable IV stands, etc., can reduce or eliminate some awkward postures when used correctly. Ensure that good housekeeping is maintained to clear space in patient rooms and hallways to provide room for more neutral postures while working.

What are the 3 examples of ergonomics?

Types of Ergonomics – efore buying hundreds of new chairs, it’s important to develop an understanding of how ergonomics affects people. There are three types of ergonomics : physical, cognitive, and organizational. Each of these differently affects how people interact with their environment, contributing to how effective they are in their work.

What is the basic definition of ergonomics?

Ergonomics is a holistic term that primarily refers to the overall process of arranging a workplace, systems, and equipment in a way that makes it easy for people to use them. In many ways, ergonomics can be defined as the study of people who operate in a work environment.

Why is ergonomics important in healthcare?

Ergonomics Reduces Risk of Injury To Medical Workers – Healthcare workers are prone to injury from a number of sources, including the tools they work with, the patients they help, and the stress that their bodies experience in their line of work. One way to minimize injury to doctors, nurses, and other healthcare employees is to introduce high-quality ergonomics that will help keep them in comfortable, natural positions while they are working.

What are the 4 categories of ergonomics?

There are five aspects of ergonomics: safety, comfort, ease of use, productivity/performance, and aesthetics. Ergonomics is a science concerned with the ‘fit’ between people and their work.

What are 5 examples of good ergonomics?

Frequently Asked Questions on Ergonomic Design – Ergonomics is an applied science related to designing and arranging things. An ergonomic design aims to reduce physical stress and the resulting injuries. One of the benefits of ergonomics is that it also enhances occupational hygiene to enhance productivity and better work culture.

  1. An ergonomic workplace is a workspace designed to keep workers’ capabilities and limitations in mind.
  2. The ideal design promotes the best sitting posture and removes the risk of musculoskeletal injuries.
  3. The best example of an ergonomic design is comfortable furniture like an office chair, an ideally designed desk, improved footrests, comfortable wrist rests, an adjustable monitor, an ergonomic keyboard, and a well-positioned mouse.

Here are some tips for you to have a smart work from home space:

Create a dedicated workspace and do not work while sitting on the bed or couch. Use a cushioned chair to achieve the best sitting position for lower back pain. Use ample natural lighting to keep the body active. Move around after every 20 minutes and do upper back stretches to improve flexibility.

A well-designed ergonomic chair has an adjustable option to provide the best sitting option. It also has an adjustable backrest, and gives a great lumbar support. Here are more features of the chair with proper ergonomics:

An appropriate seat height An adjustable chair to provide the best sitting position for lower back pain An adjustable backrest A chair with a five-point base An adequately long armrest Excellent lumbar support

There are a lot of benefits of ergonomics. Not only are they good for your occupational hygiene but also look after your overall health. There are five principles of Ergonomics:

Safety Comfort Ease of use Productivity/Performance Aesthetics

Having this kind of furniture at your workplace and home can help avoid injuries/issues like bad posture or Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, muscle pulls, cramps etc. Hence it is imperative that you have ergonomic designs implemented both at your workplace and homes.

Adjustable chairs Standing or adjustable desks Portable workstation Keyboard and mouse


Expandable couches Kitchen extendable pips Cabinets Elongated bowls in toilets Ergonomic garden tools

Ergonomic shoes help keep your feet in the correct position for the best functioning. The shoe soles absorb shock as they reduce the pressure on the heels. Here is more on how ergonomic shoes are helpful:

Ergonomically designed shoes are an extremely useful accessory for those who have experienced foot/leg pains their entire lives. These have been designed with an anatomical arch support which keeps the feet in the correct position for proper functioning. The soles absorb shock and pain by reducing the pressure on the heels and the entire body. These ergonomic shoes are a great investment for alleviating back, knee and foot pain in the long run.

The basic principles of ergonomics include keeping essential things within reach, reducing the need for force, maintaining a neutral position while sitting or standing, reducing unnecessary and sudden motion, working at a proper height, lessening tiredness caused by static load, lessening contact stress, keep a comfortable environment, stretch and move often and have space to move around.

What are ergonomic principles for healthcare workers?

What are Ergonomic Principles? – Definition from Safeopedia Ergonomic principles are the key ideas that underlie the behaviors that workers should practice in order to avoid ergonomic injuries, such as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). It is a non-standardized term, but commonly refers to ensuring that the tools and methods that a worker uses are a safe match to their physical capabilities.

  • Prominent ergonomic principles include: Use of neutral posture, rotating tasks to avoid overwork of muscles/other tissues, use of proper handholds and proper gripping technique, and proper lifting/carrying/pushing/pulling procedures.
  • Depending on the context, discussions of ergonomic principles may also include principles of cognitive ergonomics, which deal with how to approach tasks in a manner that reduces cognitive stress and resultant errors.

The use of ergonomic principles is an important aspect of workplace health and safety. In the United States, ergonomic injuries—which usually come in the form of musculoskeletal disorders—cost between $15 and $20 billion per-year. If the injury does not rise to the level of requiring treatment or time off, it will still impose a cost in the form of lowered productivity.

  • In this context, then, workplace ergonomic principles can be understood as being a set of principles designed to reduce the risk of ergonomic injury to as low as reasonably practicable.
  • For employers, considering ergonomic principles means ensuring that all workplace equipment and task schedules are designed so that each worker can operate in a manner that matches their individual capabilities.

In an office, this could mean ensuring that chairs and keyboards are ergonomically friendly, while on a construction site it could mean designing schedules to include task switching. Regulations related to the use of ergonomic principles vary widely between jurisdictions.

  • In the United States, OSHA is forbidden from issuing any ergonomic standards; however, a number of states (e.g., California) have standards which require employers to use ergonomic principles in order to minimize hazards.
  • The European Union has a general ergonomics rule, and multiple Canadian provinces also have standards or regulations in-place.

In most regulatory contexts, the use of ergonomic principles is typically an employer-centric obligation: Employers must give employees the tools, ability, and work environment to complete in-line with ergonomic principles; however, they do not necessarily need to provide training or oversight to ensure that those principles are followed. : What are Ergonomic Principles? – Definition from Safeopedia

What are the 2 key components of ergonomics?

Ergonomics Domains of Specialization – According to the International Ergonomics Association, there are three broad domains of ergonomics : physical, cognitive, and organizational.

What is ergonomics in real life example?

Ergonomics of Daily Life – Driving: Technique to improve: adjust mirrors, lift seat at the right height, backrest adjustment, headrest position Consequences: poor vibration attenuation, poor postural support leading to hunching, increased stress and headaches Bathroom hygiene: Technique: Position toiletry items where they are easily accessible, check the lighting in the bathroom, and adjust the height of the sinks,

  1. Consequences: Neck & back pain, falls / injuries.
  2. Typing and computer work: Technique: Ergonomic keyboard, standing desk, proper postural orientation, taking breaks.
  3. Consequences: Neck pain, tension & stress, carpal tunnel syndrome,
  4. Phone: Technique: Neutral spine alignment, limiting time and messaging, increasing voice commands, taking persistent rest breaks, avoiding holding the phone below chest height.
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Consequences: neck pain and ache, tension & stress, aching in the fingers, visual strain and headaches.

What are 3 ergonomic hazards?

These include repetition, awkward posture, forceful motion, stationary position, direct pressure, vibration, extreme temperature, noise, and work stress.

What is good ergonomics?

The Answer – Advice, staff picks, mythbusting, and more. Let us help you. What Is Ergonomics In Healthcare Photo: Kyle Fitzgerald After years of slumping at a desk, I’ve started to suffer the aches that come from having a poor workspace setup. The stiff chair, the desk that’s too tall for my height, and the cramped laptop keyboard have all become a literal pain in the neck (and shoulders, and back, and elsewhere).

  • After talking with ergonomics experts, I’ve learned that an ergonomic workstation—one that supports your body in a neutral position—can reduce the risk of discomfort or pain that these stressors cause our bodies.
  • This means: Your neck isn’t bent back or down or contorted, your arms aren’t lifted or extended out to the side of your body, your wrists and hands aren’t bent up or sideways, and your spine isn’t twisted.

An ergonomic workstation will help you sit comfortably at a computer, even over long stints. (But you should still remember to take breaks and move every hour.) Here’s how to set up a workspace that fits and supports you best, based on advice from ergonomics experts and what we’ve found over years of testing home-office furniture and gear. What Is Ergonomics In Healthcare Illustration: Sarah MacReading

What is the main point of ergonomics?

Ergonomics is designing a job to fit the worker so the work is safer and more efficient. Implementing ergonomic solutions can make employees more comfortable and increase productivity.

Why is ergonomic important?

Ergonomics can improve absenteeism by helping prevent workplace injuries that lead to missed work days and creating a more comfortable working environment for employees. Ergonomic practices can also reduce employee fatigue and stress, which can be physical or psychological factors contributing to absenteeism.

What is the greatest ergonomic risk to healthcare workers?

SAFE LIFTING AND TRANSFERRING Because lifting and transferring clients pose the greatest ergonomic threat for home healthcare workers, learn to ACT safely.

What are the three pillars of ergonomics?

Three pillars of Office Equiptment Ergonomics: Balance Keyboard, Balance Keyboard Wrist Rest and Unimouse.

What are the three major factors of ergonomics?

Ergonomic Risk Factors | Environmental Health and Safety | Case Western Reserve University The three primary ergonomic risk factors that cause MSDs are awkward posture, high force, and high or long frequency. Combination of postures, forces and frequencies increase the chance of developing an MSD.

Posture – In neutral posture, the joints can absorb force more easily that in others. Awkward and extreme postures increase susceptibility to injury, as they may stress joint components and reduce or block blood flow. Force – Gripping, pinching, pushing, pulling, and lifting objects place additional force on the body’s joints.

Increasing these forces requires additional muscle exertion, and places greater loads on joints and connective tissues which can cause fatigue and may contribute to MSD when there is inadequate time for rest and recovery. Frequency – Higher frequency of awkward postures and/or forces increases the potential for damage to a joint.

What is an example of ergonomic practice?

Chairs –

adjust the seat height to allow the elbows to fall naturally onto the work surface to prevent reaching up or hunching over. Feet should be fully supported on the floor or on a footrest adjust the seat base to allow the thighs to be approximately parallel or horizontal to the floor with no excess pressure from the chair on the underside of the thighs or back of the calves adjust the backrest so the lumbar support is positioned in the small curve of the lower back, and so the back is approximately vertical if using armrests, ensure adequate desk clearance to minimise the risk of leaning away from the chair to work it is recommended to trial a range of office chairs for adjustability and comfort prior to purchase due to personal differences If having to sit for prolonged periods, safe work practices should be adopted, including:

using an ergonomic work position changing between sitting, standing and walking on a regular basis placing regularly used items within close proximity to avoid overreaching or having to stand to access objects that are not within easy reach doing stretches and work exercises on a regular basis taking regular postural breaks, for example, after every 20-30 minutes of sitting, complete another task requiring walking or standing for 2-3 minutes

What are the most common ergonomic injuries among healthcare workers?

Introduction Healthcare is, directly or indirectly, associated with the provision of health facilities to individuals. The healthcare facilities (HCF) involve a broad range of workforce such as physicians, nurses, experts, clinical research/ laboratory personnel, social and administrative workers.1 Health care services around the world employ over 59 million personnel who are daily exposed to a variety of health and safety hazards.

  • Healthcare, an important sector of the U.S.
  • Economy provides employment to over 8 million U.S.
  • Healthcare workers (HCW), including pharmacy and nursing workers, physicians, operative room staffs, environmental facilities employees, personnel in examination laboratories, veterinary care staffs and those involved in shipping and receiving patients, who are potentially exposed to dangerous drugs as well as diverse hazards.2 Common hazards experienced by HCW include biological, ergonomics, physical and psychosocial hazards.

Biological hazards comprise needle stick injuries, exposure and susceptibility to infections such as tuberculosis, hepatitis and HIV/AIDS occurring through direct and indirect body contact. Physical hazards include slips trips and falls, exposure to noise and chemicals such as glutaraldehyde, ethylene oxide and drugs.

While violence, stress and anxiety due to work constitute psychosocial hazards.3 Work related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs) are most often experienced by m edical professionals with surgeons being the most susceptible, followed by nurses and physiotherapists.4 Ergonomic hazards including problems related to backbone, neckline, shoulder and knees are common complaints among medical, dental and nursing professionals.5 The HCW face high ergonomic risks and therefore have greater potential for musculoskeletal issues along with other work associated injuries.

According to an estimate, more than 5000 injuries among HCW have been reported annually. These are mainly attributed to manual handling of patients and excessive workloads. Moreover, awkward or static postures during treatment of patients result in stresses and strains which is another cause of such problems.6 According to an estimate, one third of all cases of sick leave among health care employees are due to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

  1. Even in developed countries, MSDs among HCW are generally under reported.4 The MSDs affect body movements, cause wounds or dysfunctions of nerves, tendons, muscles, cartilage, bone, spinal discs and joints.
  2. These disorders comprise soreness, connective tissue damage, pain in back, hernia, problems of shoulder and knee tears.7 According to National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), numerous studies indicated direct relationship between physical work and occupational related MSDs.

Several aspects that are related with MSD include constant body posture, persistent sitting positions, continuous movement, un necessary use of force and prolonged standing.8 Many programs on psychosocial nature of humans, physical work and medical facilities related to the prevention and effective management of MSDs have been conducted by NIOSH and OSHA.9 Keeping in view the significance of OH&S, the current study aimed to determine various occupational hazards, especially ergonomic hazards, faced by different types of HCW, assess the level of awareness among workers regarding occupational hazards and to identify control measures provided by the employers as well as those adopted by the workers to mitigate and minimize the prevalent occupational hazards.

  1. Materials and Methods A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among 200 health care workers employed at five government and private HCFs in Lahore, Pakistan.
  2. The respondents included doctors, nurses, laboratory attendants, pharmacists, x-ray technicians and hospital sanitary workers.
  3. The total population of HCW of selected hospitals is over 3,000.

An online calculator.10 was used to determine the sample size of study group, keeping margin of error less than 7%, and confidence level 86%. The calculated sample size was 200 HCW. Questionnaire Survey Data were collected using quantitative methods via a structured questionnaire.

The questionnaire forms were completed onsite with face to face communication with the respondents. Each questionnaire form took on an average about 10 minutes to complete. The questionnaire was adapted from US Center for Disease Control (CDC), NIOSH as well as hazards reported in literature.2,11,12 The questionnaire included section on demographic information, smoking status, education status, type of health care facility, duration of work and work experience with respect to hazards.

The questionnaire comprised four more sections that addressed ergonomic, biological, physical and psychosocial hazards respectively commonly faced by HCW in the work environment. Moreover, questions on awareness of workers regarding occupational hazards and safety practices as well as control measures in place by the employers to mitigate the potential hazards in the HCFs, were also asked.

The survey did not address pre-existing screening of musculoskeletal disorders. Consent In accordance with the guidelines for conducting such research, consent was obtained from the respondents prior to filling of questionnaire. Onsite surveys were conducted with the permission from the administration of each surveyed facility.

Statistical Analysis IBM SPSS version 20 was used to analyze data from the questionnaire survey. Independent variable included type of health care occupation, type of health care facility, work in multiple facilities, work overtime, lifting heavy loads, bending/twisting at work and duration of work experience.

  1. Dependent variables included ergonomic hazards including muscle aches, chronic back pain, neck/wrist/shoulder pain, fracture/body injury, problems in body posture, stretching of muscles.
  2. Bivariate correlation was determined.
  3. The applied tests were ANOVA one-way and Pearson’s chi-square test.
  4. Results The results of the survey showed prevalence of various hazards among HCWs including ergonomic, biological, physical and psychosocial.

According to the demographic data (Table 1), majority of the HCWs were females (72.5%). Respondents comprised majorly nurses (37.5%) and doctors (32.5%). Fifty-seven percent respondents belonged to government while 43.0 % were employed in private sector HCFs.

Most of the workers (54.5%) had work experience of fewer than 5 years. The range of working hours varied from 6-10 hours, seven days a week. A number of respondents (43.5%) also worked overtime and 36.5% were doing job in multiple health care facilities. Table 2 summarizes reported OH&S problems faced by HCW.

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Ergonomic hazards included muscle aches/muscle sprains, carpel tunnel syndrome, chronic back pain, elbow/wrist/ hamstring/neck pain, problem of body posture, excessive stretching of muscles, bending/ twisting as well as lifting heavy loads multiple times at work.

Biological hazards included experience of cuts/wounds/lacerations, airborne infections, body contact with retroviral patients and specimens, and exposure to blood borne specimens. Physical hazards included trips/falls, exposure to x-rays, high noise level and chemical spills, and experience of skin burn.

Psychosocial hazards included physical abuse, stress and assaults from co-workers. Table 3 shows the categorization of reported ergonomic hazards with respect to type of facility and nature of job/work. The results of HCW awareness regarding occupational hazards and safety practices are shown in Table 4.

Majority of the workers (85.5%) had awareness regarding occupational hazards and their categories in the workplace. Post-employment workshops were most common source of occupational hazards among workers (44.5%). Table 5 identifies control measures in place by the workplace as well as individual protective measures taken by the workers.

Table 1: Characteristics of Health care workers at both Government and private health care facilities of Lahore

Characteristics Percentage %
Male 27.5
Female 72.5
Smoking status
Smoker 13
Ex- smoker 6.5
Non – smoker 80.5
Health care occupation
Doctor 32.5
Nurse 37.5
Nursing assistant 5
Laboratory attendant
Pharmacist 13.5
Radiographer 2.5
Sanitary worker 3.0
Health care facility type
Government 57.0
Private 43.0
Work characteristics
Work in Multiple facilities (more than one facility) 6.5
Work overtime (more than 8h) 43.5
Work experience
>5 years 45.5
<5 years 54.5

Table 2: Occupational health symptoms prevalent among health care workers

Hazards Percentage (%)
Ergonomic risk factors
Muscle aches/muscle sprains 76.5
Carpel tunnel syndrome 27.0
Chronic back pain 46.5
Elbow/wrist and neck pain 56.0
Hamstring 26.0
Fracture 22.5
Problems of body posture 56.0
Problem of excessive stretching of muscles 67.5
Bending/twisting at work 55.5
heavy load/ weightlifting 50.0
Slips/Trip/Falls at work 65.0
Exposure to X-ray 51.5
Skin burns 30.5
High noise levels 64.0
Chemical spills 54.0
Cuts/wounds/lacerations 69.0
Direct contact with specimens 56.0
Body contact with retroviral patient 36.0
Airborne diseases 64.0
Infectious disease 72.0
Blood borne pathogens 21.5
Psychosocial/physical abuse 68.5
Assaults from Co-Workers 43.5
Stress Due to Work 77.0

Table 3: Classification of prevalence of ergonomic hazards among different type of facility and nature of health care workers occupation

Ergonomic Hazard Type of facility Nature of Health care occupation/job
*Govt % Private % Doctor % Nurse % Nursing assistant % Laboratory attendant % Pharmacist % Radiographer % Sanitary worker %
Muscle aches/muscle sprains 53.6 46.4 34.6 38.6 5.9 4.6 9.8 3.3 3.3
Carpel tunnel syndrome 61.1 38.9 31.5 25.9 3.7 11.1 13.0 3.7 11.1
Chronic back pain 57.0 43.0 40.9 33.3 1.1 6.5 10.8 2.2 5.4
Elbow/wrist/neck pain 48.2 51.8 37.5 33.9 8.0 6.2 8.0 1.8 4.5
Hamstring 46.2 53.8 46.2 25.0 0.0 3.8 15.4 0.0 9.6
Fractured injury 42.2 57.8 40.0 28.9 4.4 6.7 6.7 2.2 11.1
Problems of Body Posture 58.9 41.1 37.5 33.9 2.7 6.2 12.5 2.7 4.5
Excessive Stretching of Muscles 61.5 38.5 34.1 38.5 5.9 4.4 11.1 2.2 3.7
Bending/twisting at work 50.5 49.5 34.2 40.5 3.6 6.3 9.0 2.7 3.6
Lift heavy load at work 56.0 44.0 25.0 46.0 5.0 5.0 10.0 4.0 5.0

Govt: Government/ public health care facility Table 4: Awareness and sources regarding occupational hazards and safety practices

Respondents n (%)
Awareness regarding occupational hazard and safety practices
Occupational hazard and category 85.5
Occupational infections 92.0
Procedures where needle stick injuries are most likely to occur 90.0
Procedures that violate the standard precaution 91.0
Occupational cross infection after clinical procedure could be prevented by effective hand washing 89.5
Sources of knowledge (of respondents) on occupational hazards
Post-employment workshop Post-employment learning in ward / clinic 44.5 15.5
Professional training 32.5
Posters / handbills 3.0
Pre-employment orientation 3.0
Mass media 1,5

Table 5: Workers responses regarding control measures provided by employer and individual personal protective measures

Control measures provided by employer Respondents n (%)
Safety education &training on all universal precautions 93.0
Safety tools, equipment & machinery 97.5
Training on all machinery & equipment used 96.0
Personal protective equipment 95.0
Training on how to wash hands 95.5
Individual personal protective measures
BCG Vaccination1 79.5
Hepatitis A Vaccination 81.0
Hepatitis B Vaccination 93.5
Received HIV screening/ examination 53.5

Discussion The current study showed prevalence of various ergonomic and other hazards among HCW. Majority of the workers were females. Women represent approximately 80 percent of the healthcare workers (HCWs) around the world.5 Majority of the respondents faced a range of ergonomic hazards in which muscle aches/ muscle sprains (76.5%), elbow/ wrist/ neck pain (56.0%), problems of body posture (56.0%), excessive stretching of muscles (67.5%), bending/ twisting at work (55.5%) were the most reported. Other ergonomic hazards included carpel tunnel syndrome (27.0%), chronic back pain (46.5%), hamstring pain (26.0%), injury due to fracture (22.5%) and lifting heavy loads of work (50.0%). This shows prevalence of MSDs among the HCW. However, similar studies show varying results. For instance, literature indicates high prevalence (77%) of lower back pain (LBP) among different types of HCW 13,14,15,16, Comparable cross-sectional study conducted among 450 physicians in Iran reported similar ergonomic hazards; LBP (15.1%), neck pain (9.8%) and knee pain (19.8%), associated with MSD. Other reported hazards include problems with body posture.17 Work related injuries including fractures have been found to be most common among nurses and other semi-skilled HCW.18 Prolonged awkward or static postures, manual lifting of heavy loads and handling of patients and prolonged standing at work are considered as main causes of work related MSD in HCF 19,20, Posture related risks have been reported to pose risk among waste workers also who are involved in waste collection tasks like lifting and dumping of waste.21 A significant correlation between muscle aches/ sprains and work in multiple health facilities (p <0.05), muscle aches/ sprains and nature of occupation (p<0.01) was found. Hence, characteristics such as nature of healthcare occupation and work in multiple facilities (more than one facility) are strongly correlated with the occurrence of muscle aches/ sprains among workers. Muscle aches/ muscle sprains were mostly reported among nurses (38.6%) and doctors (34.6%) as shown in Table 3. Similarly, positive correlation was found between chronic back pain and work in multiple health facilities (p<0.05) as well as working overtime (p<0.01). Significant correlation existed between excessive stretching of muscles and working overtime (p<0.01), work in multiple facilities (p<0.05) and lifting of heavy loads at work (p<0.05). Hazards associated with bending and twisting postures were found to be correlated with type of HCF (p<0.05) which were reported in both government (50.5%) and private (49.5%) facilities. Health issues such as neck/back/wrist pain were significantly associated with type of work facility (p<0.01) as well as nature of health care occupation (p<0.05). Total of 51.8% of such hazards were reported in private sector, mostly among doctors (37.5%). Injuries due to fractures were found to be significantly correlated with nature of occupation (p<0.05), work in more than one facilities (p<0.05), type of healthcare facility (p<0.05) and overtime work (p<0.01). Injuries resulting from fractures were mostly reported in doctors (40.0%) and nurses (28.9%) with a higher occurrence in private HCF (57.8%). A significant correlation was found (p<0.05) between carpel tunnel syndrome and nature of healthcare occupation. Carpel tunnel syndrome was mostly reported by doctors (31.5%) that comprised dentists. Pain in hamstrings was significantly correlated with nature of healthcare occupation (p<0.01) which was mostly reported among doctors (46.2%) and associated with working conditions. Hence, the present study showed that work characteristics, such as type of work facility, nature of health care occupation, work in more than one facilities, overtime work, are linked with most of the reported ergonomic hazards. Generally, characteristics such as working overtime, work in multiple facilities or in multiple shifts is reportedly associated with higher risks of injuries and susceptibility to ergonomic hazards.18,22 A study conducted among registered nurses and care aides working at full time and part-time work showed that those involved in full time work shifts had higher risks of work related injuries and fractures than those working on a part time basis.23 Several risk factors such as heavy and prolonged physical activity, increased stress and work demand as well as high body mass index (BMI) are also linked with work related MSDs among workers.17,19 In the present study, biological hazards reported included experience of cuts/wounds/ lacerations (69.0%), direct contact with specimens (56.0%), and experience of airborne diseases (64.0%) and other infections (72.0%). Although majority of the workers (90.0%) were aware of procedures where needle stick injuries are most likely to occur and were knowledgeable on occupational infections and most likely sources of occupational infection as well of the fact that occupational cross infection after clinical procedure could be prevented by effective hand washing (89.5%). Other studies also support exposure to biological hazards such as injuries due to needles and cuts, direct contact with infectious materials and cuts/wounds due to needles and sharp objects among HCWs despite having received training in handling sharp objects and infectious material.24,25 As regards protective measures, majority of the respondents had received different kinds of vaccinations including BCG, Hepatitis A and B vaccinations as well as HIV screening examination. All the facilities had proper control measures to mitigate and reduce the prevalence of biological hazards (Table 5). These included training on the proper use of machinery and equipment, universal precautions and hand washing, provision of safety education, safety tools, a set of personal protective equipment and a separate area for the disposal of medical waste. With respect to physical hazards, slips/trips/falls (65.0%), high noise levels (64.0%) chemical spills (54.0%) and exposure to x-rays (51.5%) was the most prevalent risks experienced by workers. A study conducted among Zambian HCWs also found exposure to high noise levels, skin contact with chemicals and pesticides as important issues.23 The present study also shows workers coming across psychosocial hazards including work related stress (77.0%) and some form of psychosocial or physical abuse (68.5%). Work related stress can be associated with factors such as working overtime, work in multiple health facilities, assault from co-workers and some forms of psychosocial hazards. The prevalence of psychosocial and physical abuse is a reflection of poor work ethics and work control in these health facilities. A study conducted among the HCWs of southern India indicated the prevalence of psychosocial hazards in the form of lack of promotions, non-availability of amenities; high workload and poor grievance report and address system.11 The survey showed that majority (85.5%) of the workers was aware of occupational hazards and their categories as most of the surveyed respondents comprised doctors and registered nurses. Major sources of knowledge and awareness were post-employment workshops (44.5%), professional workshops (32.5%) and post-employment learning in ward (15.5%). Conclusion The present study showed that HCW of both government and private sectors were equally exposed to ergonomics, biological, physical and psychosocial hazards. Majorly reported ergonomic hazards related to symptoms of MSDs which correlated with work characteristics such as nature of occupation, overtime and work at multiple facilities. Biological hazards comprised cuts/wounds/ lacerations, direct contact with specimens, experience of airborne diseases and other infections. Slips/trips/falls, high noise levels, chemical spills and exposure to x-rays were frequently reported physical hazards. Work related stress and some form of psychosocial or physical abuse constituted psychosocial hazards prevalent among the surveyed respondents. Although, all health care facilities had proper control measures to mitigate and minimize biological hazards and majority of the workers were using the provided PPEs. However, there is a need to improve working standards and conditions to reduce the prevailing hazards in these healthcare facilities. Acknowledgements This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors. The authors declare no conflict of interest. References

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What is an example of how ergonomics is applied in the hospitality industry?

Ergonomic Design and Lean Management in the Hospitality Industry in India With an increasing focus on wellness, hotel and restaurant interiors have become more than just an aesthetic appeal. The curation of a well-designed space enhances the purpose for which it was intended.

  1. As a result, ergonomics will play a key role in hospitality projects enclosing multi-purpose spaces ranging from guest rooms to conference halls to bars and restaurants.
  2. It is critical to get the correct layout to amplify the customer experience, using empathetic design to map out a guest’s journey from room to room with seamless efficiency.

However, hotel owners, especially in India, are yet to discover the benefits of an ergonomic and sustainable product, which benefits both the guests and the employees alike. An ergonomic design and structure can improve employee productivity, efficiency and safety, thus enhancing the overall profitability. What Is Ergonomics In Healthcare Some examples of ergonomic designs (based on the hotel positioning) include but are not limited to; Interiors

Investing in hard-surface elements, such as wood-grain vinyl flooring as compared to carpeting is more durable, easy to maintain and has a charm about it. Carpets, meanwhile, require more maintenance and manpower and are not a durable solution as they attract dust and will only do more harm in the current pandemic. Considering shower cubicles instead of tubs in the bathrooms as this will result in smaller space to clean and is more environment-friendly.


Considering LED lighting versus traditional lighting fixtures, which consume more energy and are harder to maintain. LEDs come in multiple designs and are by far the most cost-effective option. Occupancy sensors may also be considered as an alternative for certain areas as minimizing costs when needed is necessary.

Dynamic Spaces

Using hotel spaces in a dynamic manner to avoid construction of additional structures or decommissioning of existing ones. For instance, a lobby and co-working space can be converted into a lounge in the evenings. Common spaces for multi-functionality, such as dividing large conference halls into zones — a work zone, a lounge zone, a play zone and an F&B zone. Curating spaces for differently abled guests. For example, the allocated guest room should have low height furniture, low peep hole, cupboard with low cloth hanger, audible and visible blinking light for doorbell and alarm. Making sure the washrooms are differently abled friendly and building specialized ramps for people in wheelchairs across the property.

Technology upgrades

Technology is constantly upgrading whether it is in the POS systems or revenue management. Today we have QR coded menus and contactless service. Therefore, a tangible solution is to indulge in agile architecture that can easily accommodate these changes. In addition, using analytics and big data helps to better understand the consumer base and personalize services.

Apart from design and structural changes, implementing an ergonomics program can help trim operating expenses by reducing costs and improving productivity. A common and effective program is “Lean Management”. Lean Management optimizes the flow of products and services through value streams to create efficient processes which require less human effort, space, capital and time. What Is Ergonomics In Healthcare A critical error we see in restaurants and hotels every day is the manager or owner attempting to find solutions to real time problems instead of identifying the root cause of the problem. By taking a step back and correcting the process, a lot of energy and time could be saved, making the business more efficient. Some examples of lean management include:

Cross training employees so they can multitask and feel motivated Empowering employees to give suggestions and feedback Creatively cutting the bottom line by regularly training staff and re-looking at vendor options Regularly investing in property maintenance Re-engineering operations to better meet the customers’ needs Menu engineering in accordance with the locally sourced produce

In today’s world it is essential for hotel investors and owners to consider all elements of design and efficiency which drive revenue per square foot. Ergonomically designed hotels with operational efficiencies and lean management is the ideal mix. The key here is to achieve a balanced-functional structure and marry operational efficiency with eye catching design, without compromising on class or style in any way.

  • We believe that great results can be achieved from a very early stage by choosing the right architect, consultant, brand and operator — a short-term investment for long term profitability and sustainability.
  • Design is ultimately an ever-changing response to the needs of our society.
  • Our collective response to post-pandemic life may seem inept but these are just growing pains that we have when faced with a new challenge.

While the global scale and urgency may be unprecedented when stacked up against recent memory, in time public spaces will return to normal function—expertly curated to go totally unnoticed by the end user. : Ergonomic Design and Lean Management in the Hospitality Industry in India

What is ergonomics in real life example?

Ergonomics of Daily Life – Driving: Technique to improve: adjust mirrors, lift seat at the right height, backrest adjustment, headrest position Consequences: poor vibration attenuation, poor postural support leading to hunching, increased stress and headaches Bathroom hygiene: Technique: Position toiletry items where they are easily accessible, check the lighting in the bathroom, and adjust the height of the sinks,

  • Consequences: Neck & back pain, falls / injuries.
  • Typing and computer work: Technique: Ergonomic keyboard, standing desk, proper postural orientation, taking breaks.
  • Consequences: Neck pain, tension & stress, carpal tunnel syndrome,
  • Phone: Technique: Neutral spine alignment, limiting time and messaging, increasing voice commands, taking persistent rest breaks, avoiding holding the phone below chest height.

Consequences: neck pain and ache, tension & stress, aching in the fingers, visual strain and headaches.