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Risk of Injury during home care work
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Centres, Centre for Health and Building, CHB.
2010 (English)In: On the Road to Vision Zero?: Workers with high risk exposure, 2010Conference paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Old peoples’ homes and bathrooms are sometimes also a workplace for nurses. Statistics show that the risk of injury and long‐term sick‐leave is high in this occupation. In a case study, 30 nurses from the Home Care Services of Haninge council, Sweden, performed different work tasks associated with assisting someone with their personal hygiene in the bathroom. The tests were performed in the full-scale laboratory of the CHB, in a bathroom equipped with a wall-mounted toilet, height‐ adjustable and equipped with support rails. The participating nurses were wearing a measurement system CUELA (‘computer-assisted recording and long-term analysis of musculoskeletal loads’) which together with video recordings made it possible to analyse the risk postures occuring. Postures including back flexion and rotation were regularly involved in the hygiene assisting tasks, but one specific sub-task indicated a high risk of traumatic overexertion or fall on the part of the care worker. The subtask when the nurse is assisting a person with balance or strength problems standing in front of the toilet, helping to pull up or down the trousers, combined a forward bending posture often more than 50º, while rotated with their balance affected, and, at the same time, with the person cared for in a position which highly affected his or hers stability. The typical assistive device applied to toilets are foldable armrests on one or both sides of the toilet, but it was found that for this sub‐task they affected the nurses’ posture in a negative way. A new and better solution for assistive technology in this particular task is needed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Ergonomics, home care, assitive technology, overexertion, trauma risk
National Category
Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-35493OAI: diva2:428903
5th International Conference WorkingOnSafety, 7-10 sept 2010, Röros, Norway
QC 20111122Available from: 2011-07-01 Created: 2011-07-01 Last updated: 2011-11-22Bibliographically approved

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Hjalmarson, Jenny
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Centre for Health and Building, CHB
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