February 29th is Repetitive Strain Injury Awareness Day
On February 29th, the only "non-repetitive" day of the year, we join our friends at the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety in raising awareness of repetitive strain injuries (also known as musculoskeletal disorders [MSDs], or soft tissue injuries). These are painful disorders of the muscles, nerves, tendons, ligaments, joints, cartilage, or spinal discs.
What Causes an MSD?
MSDs are the result of exposure to biomechanical risk factors such as forceful exertions, awkward postures, sustained exertions, high frequencies, and vibrations.
How Ergonomics Can Help
You know that your employees are your most valuable resource. That’s why it’s important to make sure you provide a work environment that is designed to match people’s capabilities. When ergonomics is done right and human performance is optimized, there are two primary positive outcomes: improved employee well-being and enhanced business performance.
3 Reasons Why You Should Care About Ergonomics
There are many reasons why you should make ergonomics a priority in your organization, but here are 3 compelling ones, followed by several resources to help guide you along the way.
- MSDs are a global concern. MSDs are the second greatest cause of disability globally, having increased 45% since 1999.
- MSDs have a connection to the opioid crisis. 57% of people who have died from opioid-related deaths had at least one prior workplace MSD. You have the power to save lives by reducing the physical risk factors that lead to injuries in the workplace and the resulting prescription of opioid pain killers.
- MSDs are costly for you and your employees, with a staggering financial burden of treatment estimated to be $510 billion a year.
Check Out These Resources to Learn More
Why Ergonomics? Communicating the Value to Business Stakeholders: Most people understand the impact ergonomics has on employee well-being but what about business performance?
Five Approaches to Managing MSDs: What Really Works: This e-book will help you understand the right approach to reducing MSDs in your organization.
Using Leading Metrics to Improve Workplace Ergonomics: Humantech's e-book will help you prevent musculoskeletal disorders through ergonomic design and tracking the right measures.
Office Ergonomics: What Makes it Unique to Manage?: Understanding the unique attributes of the office environment is key to building a successful ergonomics process.