Injury Prevention Programs: Why they are important for manufacturers to consider

OSHA first aid early intervention programs are all the buzz these days. Especially because common injuries or disorders can happen in the work environment and performance contributes to making the condition worse or persist longer. It can be found in muscles, nerves, tendons, joints, cartilage, and spinal discs.

So, companies throughout the United States are looking for ways to keep their employees healthy, avoid injuries, provide ergonomic improvements, and increase their employee retention rate. The solution = onsite early intervention, but what exactly does that mean or look like?

These types of programs bring in trained specialists to work with employees to reduce/eliminate early signs and symptoms of work and non-work-related musculoskeletal disorders while staying within OSHA first aid guidelines and avoiding recordables. These services can be provided in multiple ways on-site, near-site, and rapid rehab.

What is Onsite Early Intervention?
  • Places therapists at the worksite for a specified number of hours each week
  • Therapist meets with employees that are showing early stages of aches/pains
  • Follows OSHA First-Aid guidelines to prevent the symptom from developing into a recordable injury
  • Analyzes the employee’s work station for ergonomic improvements
  • Continues to follow up with the employee until the ache or pain has subsided

By providing early intervention you can help your company:

  • Significantly reduce your incident rate and workers’ comp costs
  • Keep employees healthy, safe, and productive
  • Fewer injuries equate to less staffing and productivity issues
  • Increase employee satisfaction and add to your employee benefits offering
  • Job station ergonomic analysis can prevent the chances of future injuries
Cost Savings

Employers are always concerned about their return on investment – will they have an increase in OSHA recordables, and exactly what can, and can’t you do within the OHSHA first aid guidelines to minimize medical treatment to avoid them? On the flip side, employers do not want to deny medical treatment or an OSHA recordable when a musculoskeletal incident exceeds the level of a minor incident.

When looking at national data to glean the value of these early intervention programs for employers and employees, the value employers see is straightforward. Every $1 on injury prevention equals $2.67 in average savings to a company in lost time and direct medical costs.

Also, based on national injury prevention data from the last two years, 35% of incidents are work-related and 65% are non-work-related. There is a huge trend in these programs seeing employees for non-work-related injuries. This means if an employee is injured outside of work, it could impair how they perform on the job. So, if a company can help an employee through a non-work related injury while at work they will be able to perform their job better, and the company saves time and money that would potentially be spent if the employee went to the doctor.

Increase Retention Rate

The other trend that is apparent with early intervention programs is the improvement in retention rate. This is also of value to the employee. When employees know there is care at their employer for an aging ache or pain, they are more likely to go to work and stay employed at that company which provides an ongoing sense of worth and personal value within the workforce. Staying employed has value for both the employer and the employee.

Win-Win for Both

It’s important to think about both sides of the coin when providing early intervention programs. The employer value of fewer recordables, less work comp cost, more productivity, lower DART/Incident/Severity Rates, and higher employee retention are important.

And, perhaps even more important is sending the employee home to their family every day with less discomfort whether it is work-related or not. Plus, less out-of-pocket expenses and they will likely remain working for an employer that demonstrates the great benefit of an injury prevention program.


Written by Steve Ziccarelli, Vice President of Business Development at OccuCare Injury Prevention.

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