Is the Veterinary Industry Dangerous?

Workers’ compensation laws are in every state, and employers have obligations to provide safe work environments. Some jobs are considered more dangerous than others. In the veterinary field, many employees are subject to hazards. In fact, workers’ compensation claims in the veterinary industry lead to eight million dollars each year.

What are Common Injuries Seen in the Veterinary Field?

When taking into account the unpredictability of pets, the risks of getting bitten or scratched are high. There are also other hazards for veterinary workers. Some of the most common work injuries in the veterinary field include:

Bites and Scratches

Being skilled enough to communicate with and heal pets does not guarantee the animals will behave when they are being treated. A bite or scratch, especially from a non-domesticated animal, may easily lead to an infection.

Most workers’ compensation claims among veterinary workers are related to animal bites. The risk of infection is also a concern if it is not properly treated. Although treatment is needed right away, proper equipment can prevent injuries. In fact, most veterinary employees who were bitten or scratched reported not wearing protective gear.

Contact Injuries

Animal attacks are not just limited to bites or scratches. Larger animals can leave severe injuries. For example, a kick from a horse is particularly dangerous and can cause great harm to a veterinary worker. Although animal attacks like these are rare, they can be debilitating.

Treatment Hazards

Working with medicine exposes a worker to various gases, chemicals, and other harmful substances. Breathing in certain chemicals, like anesthesia or insecticides, can cause short-term and long-term issues. Serious problems from untreated work injuries include dizziness, respiratory problems, and internal damage.

Sprains and Strains

Lifting a large animal is not always simple. Often, veterinary workers must lean or crouch down multiple times a day to treat animals. Bending and lifting can cause muscle strains, neck and back pain, and these injuries can take several days or more to heal.

How Can Veterinary Workers Stay Safe?

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) implements rules and regulations to protect workers in the veterinary field. These guidelines include rules about proper equipment, elimination controls, engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment (PPE).

Proper training is essential in all industries. Workers should be kept up to date on any compromising situations or potential hazards. Administrative training is also highly important. Workers need to be trained on how to operate equipment. Employees must learn all emergency procedures. All employees in veterinary offices should be well-informed.

If a veterinary worker is injured at their job, they might be eligible for workers’ compensation. After a work accident, a veterinary employee should contact a lawyer who will help them with a claim.

Downingtown Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Wusinich & Sweeney, LLC Protect the Rights of Injured Veterinary Employees

There are many hazards in the veterinary industry. If you are a hurt veterinary worker, you may be eligible for compensation. Our respected Downingtown workers’ compensation lawyers at Wusinich & Sweeney, LLC protect injured workers in all industries. Call us at 610-594-1600 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Exton, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Downingtown, West Chester, Exton, Coatesville, Phoenixville, Malvern, Lyndell, Wagontown, Uwchlan Township, Parkesburg, Chester Springs, Lancaster County, Reading, and Morgantown.

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Since Governor Wolf’s Order changing Chester County to green status, Wusinich & Sweeney, LLC is open for business. We are making every endeavor to keep our clients safe. If you would like to interact mainly by remote means, we can facilitate your request. Also, we have modified our office pursuant to the below COVID-19 safety plan to keep our clients as safe as possible.

COVID-19 SAFETY PLAN

FOR WUSINICH & SWEENEY, LLC

  1. Check all people’s temperatures upon entrance. Deny entrance to anyone with a fever. Inform visitors that we regret that the law requires us to deny entry to people with fevers or other symptoms, and the firm will schedule a telephone or video visit promptly.
  2. Any persons with symptoms (fever, coughing) should stay home.
  3. Stagger work/meeting times to minimize number of persons in the office at once.
  4. All employees and visitors must wear masks except when office is empty or when sitting at own desk.
  5. Make soap and water and hand sanitizer available for all.
  6. All employees and visitors must maintain social distancing while in building.
  7. Use plastic sneeze guards at front desk and in conference room.
  8. IN CASE OF EXPOSURE TO PERSON WITH PROBABLE OR CONFIRMED CASE OF COVID-19:
    1. Close off areas visited by infected person.
    2. Open outside doors and windows and use fans, if possible, to circulate air.
    3. Wait 24 hours or as long as practical and then clean and sanitize all affected areas.
    4. Identify people who were in close contact (within six feet for more than ten minutes) and follow CDC guidelines.