Risk Management: Ergonomics in the Workplace.
The purpose of this paper is to discuss ergonomics in the workplace through a risk management perspective. Additionally, I have discussed the issue of ergonomics with a fellow coworker that had the unfortunate experience first hand of poor risk management in our work environment. Addressing ergonomics with a risk management perspective can decrease employee workers compensation statistics. .
What is ergonomics?.
Ergonomics is the field of study that seeks to fit the job to the person, rather than the person to the job. It is a matter of designing or redesigning the workplace environment. This includes the individual employees workspace, equipment, and tasks that the employee will be interacting with.
Why is ergonomics important?.
Appropriate ergonomics is an important factor to help keep the employee from any injury or illness causing musculoskeletal disorders. These disorders can affect muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, joints, cartilage, bone, and blood vessels. The trauma can be of the neck, back, extremities; elbow, wrists, etc. A risk management plan for an ergonomically correct work environment not only benefits the employee's health, but also decreases one aspect of the company's liability for workers compensation. .
Risk Factors and Impact.
Risk factors that increase the likelihood of musculoskeletal disorders include:.
Sustained or awkward positions.
Excessive bending or twisting of the wrist.
Continued elbow or shoulder motion.
Lack of variation in movement.
Inadequate work-rest periods.
The impact of no risk management assessment for appropriate ergonomics in the workplace can be damaging both physically and financially for the employee. The lack of such a program can be very costly to the employer as well. The effected employee may endure pain and numbness in the neck, hands, elbows, and shoulders that can last life long.