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Workplace Violence in the Social Services Industry

Social service workers are at an elevated risk to become victims of workplace violence. Their close proximity to people with mental health problems or histories of violent actions means they require similar protections granted to firefighters, police officers, and prison employees. In Nevada, employers who fail to protect their employees from known hazards can be held liable for the injuries and deaths that occur as a result of their negligence.

Workplace Violence in Healthcare Facilities & Social Services

Healthcare and social service workers are four times more likely to suffer workplace violence injuries than those in other private industries. Nationwide, the rate of violent acts against healthcare and social service workers is larger than all other industries combined. Approximately 70% of all workplace violence incidents occur in healthcare and social service settings.  Providers have a responsibility to their employees, patients, and visitors to proactively protect individuals against these violent acts. From 2009 to 2013, more than 730,000 instances of workplace violence were recorded against nurses, doctors, administrative aides, security personnel, and social service workers employed in the sector.

The responsibility of healthcare and social service providers includes reviewing patient records and taking preventative steps to protect workers against hazardous individuals. It includes implementing security response procedures and limiting access to the facility via locking doors, on-site security personnel, etc.

Strengthening OSHA Standards

In November 2018, legislators began debating HR 7141 which would strengthen protections for healthcare and social service workers. However, more than a year later and the legislation remains within the Subcommittee on Health of the Education and the Workforce, Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means Committee. If passed, the legislation would require the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to establish stronger workplace violence prevention standards within the healthcare and social services sectors. 

Documenting Workplace Violence

Nurses, doctors, administrative personnel, and others responsible for providing healthcare and social services should thoroughly document the extent of their injuries and any communications with their employer. Medical records, insurance claims forms, police reports, and other supporting evidence can establish the extent of an employer’s liability, and the liability of the individual responsible for causing the injuries. Individuals must comply with all required reporting requirements including filing reports and claims within the timeframes specified under state statutes.    

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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) update

March 18, 2020 Udpate.

We have just been given notice that all Hearings and Appeals have been vacated and are off calendar by order the Senior Appeals Officer from the Nevada Department of Administration. It is unknown when the reset dates will occur.

March 17, 2020 Update.

As efforts concerning the containment of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) continue to evolve here in the U.S. and around the world, we want to assure you that Jason D. Mills & Associates remains committed to three important priorities:

Our offices remain open for business; however, we encourage all existing clients to help us limit exposure and the potential spread of COVID-19 by avoiding in-office meetings. We remain open for business virtually during normally scheduled work hours (9:00 am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday). All email, fax, telephone, and other electronic communication will continue without interruption. If you have a scanner please scan documents and send to us in .PDF format. If you do not have a scanner, there are smart phone apps available such as: CamScanner, Adobe Scan and Genius Scan (and many others), that will turn your smart phone into a document scanner at zero or little cost.

Our local courts continue to update and modify their policies and procedures in response to the current COVID-19 situation as well, and we are monitoring those procedures to navigate the impact on your claims. So far, the Hearing and Appeals Office has halted all in-person hearings and is in the process of converting future hearings into telephonic hearings. As we learn more, we will provide updated information.

We also know that many of you have been personally impacted in a number of ways, and we apologize for any inconvenience these modifications may cause you but of course we are all experiencing this disruption together and will get through it together. We will resume normal operations as soon as the local, state and national governments give instructions that it is reasonable to do so. We appreciate your flexibility as we do our part to help bring this unprecedented situation under control.

Again, we are fully operational and are actively working on your claims. If there is anything you need, please feel free to contact our office (telephonically or electronically) during office hours so that we can direct your call and follow up accordingly.