The Cost of MSD Injuries

Before discussing the financial burden of MSDs, we should be clear that one of the most important motivations behind a workplace MSD Injury Prevention initiative is that “it is simply the right thing to do.” Costs are the biggest driver motivating employers to take action, but employees take the brunt of the “human costs” of MSDs through unnecessary pain and suffering, loss of income, stress, conflict, and more.

Employees deserve to go to work every day and return home to their families in the same or better condition, and employers invest in, and therefore should reap the benefits of happy, productive employees. The only way to achieve this is through balance. The layers which are applied through our process create a solid foundation for long term success. They also build a solid but flexible structure which allows balance to exist on a daily basis.

The most costly work-related injuries are Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs). MSDs are reported by persons in the U.S. more than any other health condition. In 2004, the estimated total cost of treatment and lost wages associated with Musculoskeletal Disorders was $849 billion dollars, equal to 7.7 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). Even the most moderate of calculations put the annual costs of MSDs at over $380 billion, every year, in the US alone! These costs have not only steadily risen over time; they continue to increasingly whittle away at company profits.

Accurate Ergonomics and Balance and Motion for Health specialize in the prevention of MSDs. We are the only company who truly focuses 100% on the prevention of MSD Injuries and Illnesses, not on their treatment.

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There are over 500,000 carpal tunnel surgeries and more than 800,000 back surgeries performed every year in the United States alone. Back, shoulder, neck, wrist, and knee injuries are the highest cost and the most common forms of MSD injuries. Sprains and strains account for over 40% of all lost time injuries. For many years now, Back Injuries and Lower Back Pain (LBP), continue to be the number one business loss. Many calculators today place a $50,000.00 price tag on just one back injury, however the total cost generally adds up to $275,000.00 or more, over a three year period.

In either case, a company cannot afford too many MSD Injuries. None being the most optimal situation. When an organization takes a serious look at the costs related to MSD injuries (past, current and potential), and then combines those losses with decreased productivity, increased presenteeism and lower morale (resulting from fatigue, discomfort, pain and injuries), and then adds DART days to the equation, the data clearly shows that employers and employees alike suffer losses in the hundreds of billions of dollars, every year. These unnecessary direct and indirect costs are usually the biggest expense for any organization, right under meeting payroll.

$380,000,000,000.00

OSHA recently stated that, “MSD injuries may destroy a family’s emotional and financial security and the toll on injured workers is intolerable.” They also said that “workplace MSD injuries are taking an enormous toll on the U.S. economy.” The fact is, as much money is spent on back injuries and back pain as is spent on cancer in the United States alone!

Cost Of A Single Injury

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Partiel Cost of Injuries

We can’t see a back injury and we don’t really know who is hurting and who is not, at any given time, but believe us the number is probably higher than you think. Employees seldom openly talk about how they feel and rarely speak about pain. These conditions rarely, if ever go away by themselves. Some of your employees may have back pain and some may have experienced a back injury already. If/when an injured worker is fortunate enough to return to work, they are then five times more likely to reinjure themselves.

From our experience, many of your employees are currently experiencing early warning signs of a potential MSD injury. Also consider, that people who have been seriously injured are not at work, they are at home. Their coworkers cannot see these injured colleagues and often are not given the opportunity to learn from these unfortunate situations. Often a huge opportunity is missed, which might then allow all employees to potentially avoid the same situation for them. Open, honest communications are always the most successful strategy for preventing future injuries. Making good use of teachable moments is one key to our client’s success!

We realize that aging workforces and economic cycles exponentially increase risk and risk taking. We also realize that changing long term behaviors and habits is challenging, but this is our specialty and precisely what our company accomplishes with excellent results! Our training programs bring about actual behavioral change by implementing countermeasures, such as SAFE stretching and flexibility exercise programs.

Our structured system and proven process is guaranteed to add value to your safety system and will substantially reduce risk in your organization while simultaneously eliminating preventable injuries and incidents.

Are MSDs eating away at your company’s profits? We can calculate your losses and your potential gains for you. Accurate Ergonomics is an industry leading, MSD prevention organization and we know how to get to the bottom of your MSD challenges. We look forward to assisting your organization throughout the process, so that once and for all these costs will finally be reduced. Allow us an opportunity to help you transition the yearly cost of injuries into annual profits.

“MSD Injury Prevention Doesn’t Cost Your Company, It Pays Your Company.”

Call now to speak with an expert at Accurate Ergonomics: 866-950-ERGO (3746), or email us at info@accurateergonomics.com

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