If you are employed at a medical facility, you are focused on treating patients who are ill or injured. In hospitals, the people you treat are usually very ill and may depend on you to help them with very basic needs. This means close contact with people who may have serious and even contagious illnesses.
One of the most common types of infections that spreads to medical professionals is a staph infection known as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a particularly dangerous as it is very resistant to treatment.
MRSA is caused by exposure to bacteria in a healthcare setting and it is more common among older people or those with lowered immune systems. However, anyone, including medical professionals, can contract MRSA. The initial symptoms are small red skin bumps that look much like insect bites or acne. The small bumps can quickly become deep, painful wounds that often require surgery to drain them.
Although MRSA infections normally go no further than the skin, they can infect the blood, heart or lungs. MRSA is contracted through close contact with patients who have the illness, but can also be contracted by touching objects contaminated with the bacteria. MRSA can be very difficult to treat and if it spreads to the blood or bone, the illness can be life-threatening as there are few effective antibiotics available to treat it.
There have been reports of MRSA outside the hospital setting, however. A visitor who is spending time with a loved one who is in the hospital could touch an object that has been contaminated with MRSA. It can also be spread by people who are involved in close-contact sports or in locker rooms. Because the symptoms may appear mild at first, you may not seek immediate medical treatment which could allow the illness to spread.
According to an MRSA infections attorney at Lundy Law, if you contract MRSA through employment at a medical facility, you are eligible for workers’ compensation. You may receive compensation for lost wages, medical bills or other expenses you may incur due to the illness. You cannot be fired for filing a workers’ compensation claim. It is important, however, to speak to a qualified workers’ compensation attorney to be sure you receive the compensation you are eligible for under the law. This does not mean you plan to sue your employer as Pennsylvania law does not allow lawsuits for workplace injuries. An attorney will look out for your best interests throughout your claim.
If you or a loved one has contracted MRSA as part of your job, contact the MRSA infections attorneys at Lundy Law to learn what rights you may have. You can complete the simple form online or call us at 1-800-Lundy Law to arrange for your initial, no obligation consultation.