Aging Workforce: Preventing Injuries as Risk Increases
The Aging Workforce is Rapidly Growing and with it grows risk of injury. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, workers aged 75 and older are going to grow in number by 86 percent by 2024. That is compared to a mere 5 percent growth rate for the work force as a whole. That means that workers who are 75-and-older are expected to grow 17 times the size of the overall workforce in the near future.
With this increase in the aging workforce, we are seeing many benefits, but also many risks. This population that brings experience and knowledge to the workforce is also the most at risk for musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).
Why They Are at Higher Risk
As they say, along with age comes experience. But not all experience is good. The aging workforce has had more years of work under its belt and therefore more repetitive motions and a longer history of prior injuries. Along with this history, wear on the body and a slower healing process causes this people group to have a significant risk of musculoskeletal disorders.
How to Mitigate the Risk
There are important steps that you can take to lower the risk that your aging workforce faces.
• Risk assessments are an important step in lowering MSDs. Injury Prevention Specialists can determine whom of your employees are at high risk for MSDs and form a plan of action to mitigate that risk.
• Ergonomic Workspaces are a statistically proven method of injury prevention. Whether your workers are in engineering or roofing, you can create an ergonomic workspace that minimizes the external and positional causes of MSDs.
• Education and Training are essential to increasing the safety of the aging workforce. Most of the workers over 55 that we assess and work with at Injure Proof have dangerous work habits that put them at high risk for soft tissue injury. Providing continuous ergonomic and safety training is a crucial task in lowering their risk.
The Injure Proof team is always happy to provide answers and resources for your workplace safety needs. Contact us today for your complimentary consultation to discuss your business's needs.