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Nursing Home Workers' Comp Rights Under Attack

The nursing home industry is known for its high turnover rates, upwards of 100%. Staffing challenges make it hard to believe that a significant portion of workers terminated after suffering work-related injuries. A new U.S. study shows that employees in that industry are twice as likely to lose their jobs within six months of being injured and filing workers' comp claims as their peers who were not injured.

Researchers used data from a study done by the Work, Family and Health Net studying 30 New England nursing homes and 1,331 workers who completed an interview at the start of the study and three more after exactly six, 12 and 18 months.

Using the selected facilities' administrative data to distinguish workers who were terminated or left voluntarily, researchers found 30 percent suffered injuries and 25 percent were no longer employed after 18 months.

Those injured at work were 30 percent more likely to quit or be fired within six months. Of that group, people injured more than once were more likely to resign while employees injured only once were more likely to be fired. Most of those workers were women.

Nursing home employers will likely not admit to adverse conditions and poor hiring and firing practices. However, the link cannot be ignored.

Employers are responsible for protective measures to prevent both physical harm and wrongful termination. A job site should have the highest standards of safety and avoid creating hostile environments. Employees should feel confident that an injury suffered at work would lead to treatment and recovery, not termination.

A skilled workers' compensation attorney can hold employers accountable and help injured employees fired after a work-related accident.

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