International Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) Awareness Day
As workplaces around the world recognize International Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) Awareness Day, the Institute for Work & Health recommends that organizations include participatory ergonomics (PE) as a prevention measure of musculoskeletal disorders. Musculoskeletal disorders involve muscle, tendon, ligament, and other soft tissue injuries. PE is a collaborative process wherein workers, supervisors, and other stakeholders in the workplace identify and address work-related risk factors that may contribute to musculoskeletal disorders.
Since musculoskeletal disorders are among the top reasons of sickness absence resulting from work-related injuries, a study conducted by Dr. Emile Tompa and his team found that PE initiatives save organizations costs in the areas of first-aid only workplace injuries, injuries requiring modified duties, casual absence days, long-term sickness absences, and rejected products due to quality problems. From this evidence and that of other studies, it would certainly seem that PE would be a valuable program for organizations to implement. The key, then, is for the research findings to make their way to organizations who will benefit. What can disability management professionals do to help in this regard? Please share your thoughts.