How to Prevent Home Health Care Worker Injuries, Reduce Workers’ Comp Costs

January 16, 2024

As we discussed in a previous article, home health care workers face several hazards that result in injuries. These include strains, sprains, and back injuries due to lifting and other strenuous activities; slips and falls; infections and diseases as a result of exposure to poor indoor air quality, lead paint, toxic substances, and other domestic hazards at patients’ homes; and violent injuries as a result of interaction with an agitated, incoherent, or impaired patient. Home health care workers administering injections or handling medical equipment may be at risk of needlestick injuries, which can expose them to bloodborne pathogens. Those who commute to various patients’ homes are exposed to potential driver-related injuries.

Home health care agencies that provide a safe environment with robust safety and loss control measures in place have a lower frequency and severity of losses and ultimately reap the rewards of a healthier staff and lower Workers’ Compensation costs. 

The first step in creating a safe work environment is recognizing and controlling common industry hazards. Once these hazards are identified, establish a safety program comprised of educational resources, employee pre-screening practices, employee training, and safety protocols. Following are some of the measures that a home health care provider should employ:

Training and Education

  • Provide comprehensive training on infection control, proper lifting and transferring techniques, and emergency procedures. Encourage the use of assistive devices when handling patients.
  • Educate workers on specific health conditions they may encounter and how to address them.
  • Train workers on the correct use, disposal, and replacement of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Infection Control

  • Emphasize strict adherence to infection control protocols, including hand hygiene and sanitization of equipment.


  • Ensure that home health care workers have access to and use appropriate PPE such as gloves, masks, gowns, and eye protection.

Home Environment Assessment

  • Assess the home environment for potential safety hazards and take necessary precautions.

Secure Medications

  • Ensure medications are stored securely and train workers on medication management protocols.
  • Implement measures to prevent medication errors.

Transportation Safety

  • If home health care workers are required to travel between clients’ homes, ensure they have safe and reliable transportation.
  • Provide guidelines for safe driving practices.

Workplace Violence Prevention

  • Implement policies and training programs to prevent and respond to incidents of workplace violence.
  • Encourage open communication between workers and supervisors regarding safety concerns.

Mental Health Support

  • Recognize the emotional challenges of home health care work and provide access to mental health support services.
  • Encourage a supportive work environment and open dialogue about stress triggers.

Emergency Preparedness

  • Equip workers with knowledge and skills to handle emergencies, including CPR and first-aid training.
  • Establish clear communication channels for workers to report emergencies and receive support.

Additionally, implement a return-to-work program to help drive down Workers’ Compensation costs. Report claims promptly, along with the required information when a worker is injured on the job, to ensure he or she receives immediate medical attention. Early medical intervention can lead to faster recovery and minimize the severity of injuries. Also, if the process is delayed, the claim cost increases.

About One80 Intermediaries/Manchester Specialty

Manchester Specialty, a division of One80 Intermediaries, is a national specialty underwriting and insurance program management firm, licensed to do business as a program administrator in all 50 states and D.C. Our agent/broker partners and their Allied Health clients look to us for our expertise, broad product capability, commitment to the market, and the quality and stability of our insurance programs for Home Care, Medical Staffing, Allied Health, and Human Services organizations. For more information, call us toll-free at 1-855-972-9399 or visit Allied Health Firms – One80 Intermediaries.