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Success with Ergonomics
Borderview Rehabilitation and Living Center

State: Maine
   
Company: Borderview Rehabilitation and Living Center
  Van Buren, Maine
   
Industry: Nursing homes SIC Code: 805
   
Employees: 153

 
Success Brief: Borderview Rehabilitation and Living Center, a Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program site, reduced musculoskeletal injury rates through an ergonomics program involving employee participation and feedback, workstation and equipment modifications, and reassessment of the changes that are made.
 

The Problem
 
Despite training of all employees in proper body mechanics for job-related tasks, several back injuries were reported over a short period of time. 

The Solution
 
The company already had annual department-specific "back care" training in place to teach proper body mechanics. After the back injuries were reported, Borderview developed and implemented a program of separate analysis of the jobs in each department. As part of the job task analyses, the employees completed a questionnaire on which they could voice their concerns and comments. With input from the employees, the department heads worked with an ergonomics team to modify tasks and/or change the work environment and/or equipment. After the changes were implemented, employees were consulted to determine if the changes were effective or if additional modifications were needed. Employees also participate in exercise programs designed by the company's physical therapists to increase strength and reduce the likelihood of injury.

The Impact
 
The company has three times achieved its goal of 100 consecutive days without a lost- time injury.

 
Source: Leslie P. Beaulieu, OTR/L, Head of Ergonomics Program.

*Member of the Consultation Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) sponsored by OSHA and the United States Department of Labor