May 20, 2008
Contact: Brad Mitchell Scott Allen
Phone: 312-353-4807 312-353-6976
CHICAGO -- Reducing and preventing injuries among physical therapists and other health care employees is the goal of a regional alliance between the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA).
"Working together to share best practices, and develop and implement safety and health training for these dedicated employees, is an easy call," said Michael Connors, OSHA's regional director in Chicago. "If we can provide physical therapists and others the ability to anticipate, identify and eliminate work-related hazards, we will get much closer to eliminating job-related injuries."
The alliance will operate in six Midwestern states: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. He noted that the cooperative effort will focus on the prevention of work-related musculoskeletal disorders and the safe handling of patients.
The APTA, headquartered in Alexandria, Va., is a national professional organization representing more than 70,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants and students. Its mission is to further the profession's role in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of movement dysfunctions and the enhancement of the physical health and functional abilities of members of the public. There are nearly 13,000 physical therapists, physical therapist assistants and students, and thousands more general health care employees, working in the Midwest.
OSHA safety and health alliances are part of U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao's ongoing efforts to improve the safety and health of employees through cooperative partnerships. OSHA currently has more than 470 alliances throughout the nation with organizations committed to fostering safety and health in the workplace.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
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