In a new report released by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), officials at Bergen Regional Medical Center are accused of failing to protect staff members from excessively violent patients and disregarding employee injuries.
As first reported by NJ.com, OSHA tracked eight separate incidents from February to June of this year after being alerted by employees of the facility. In each situation, nurses suffered bruises, cuts, bites, punches and were exposed to blood-borne pathogens. In some instances, staff members were even cornered in patients’ rooms, unable to get to safety. OSHA issued the facility a $13,000 citation on August 18. The director of OSHA’s office in Hasbrouck Heights stated, “It’s clear that this facility’s workplace violence program is ineffective and should be improved immediately to protect employees and ensure a safe workplace.”
Officials at Bergen believe that conditions in the hospital are simply part of the environment, stating that “caring for patients whose disease makes their actions unpredictable is challenging, as all healthcare workers understand.” A meeting has been scheduled between the Administration and the hospital staff to discuss potential solutions or ways to reduce the citations.
Unfortunately, some jobs come with a certain degree of danger and potential for violent situations. But, when an employer doesn’t take the steps to protect their employees or even puts them in harms way without warning, they could face legal action. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the behavior or incidents, injured employees may be able to secure compensation for their injuries.
For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact the New Jersey personal injury attorneys at Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C. today. We can be reached at (609) 240-0040.