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Back Care Ergonomics

Learning Objectives

  • Identify the health care tasks associated with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and explain the role of employers and workers in reducing MSD risks
  • Assess the MSD risks associated with the tasks you perform at the health care facility where you work
  • Determine how to perform your health care work tasks in a way that reduces your risk of developing MSDs

Available in English

20 minutes

The purpose of this lesson is to familiarize individuals who work in medical facilities with the principles of back care and ergonomics in order to help them reduce or prevent work-related injuries. OSHA does not currently have regulations related to back care and ergonomics, but there are many reasons for employers to be proactive in reducing worker injuries, which may account for lost time, decreased productivity, and lower quality of work.

Course Outline
  • Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs)
  • Assessing Risks
  • Performing Tasks Safely
Regulations
  • The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Ergonomics and Musculoskeletal Disorders, “Elements of Ergonomics Programs,” Publication No. 97-117
  • The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), NIOSH-Issued Publications, “Guidelines for Protecting the Safety and Health of Health Care Workers,” Publication No. 88-119
  • United States Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Computer Workstations eTool
  • Association of Safe Patient Handling Professionals (ASPSP)
  • Cal/OSHA Consultation Service, Research and Education Unit, Division of Occupational Safety and Health, California Department of Industrial Relations, “Ergonomic Guidelines for Manual Materials Handling,” 2007