Nurses' Exposure to Toxic Substances
Studies have found that nurses regularly face low level exposures of dangerous materials including medication residue, chemicals, radiation, and anesthetic gases. In some cases, they are subject to acute incidents or accidents that involve toxins. If you are a nurse who is concerned about nurses’ exposure to toxic substances and benefits and remedies that may be available, you should talk to the seasoned Chicago worker’s compensation attorneys of Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca. In addition to evaluating and pursuing benefits under the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act, we may be able to pursue relief on your behalf in a third party lawsuit for damages or a Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) claim, as appropriate.Nurses’ Exposure to Toxic Substances
Nurses are exposed to a wide range of toxic, even deadly, substances in the workplace. These exposures may be the result of medications, toxic materials in medical devices, cleaning agents, and other substances routinely encountered on the job.
Toxic substance carry a broad range of risks. For instance, if you develop an illness due to an airborne pathogen to which you’re exposed on the job, you may be able to obtain workers’ compensation benefits. If you are exposed to neoplastic drugs on the job, you may face a higher risk of developing cancer and may be able to obtain benefits. Similarly, death benefits may be available if your spouse was a nurse who died as the result of exposure to toxic chemicals on the job.
Toxic substances can also worsen asthma attacks. As a nurse who suffers from asthma and finds yourself disabled or in need to medical care as the result of exposure to disinfectants, sterilizing agents, latex or cleaning chemicals, you may find your claim denied by a hospital or health care practice’s workers’ compensation insurer. The insurer may cite your “preexisting condition.” However, you should be aware that this type of denial may be invalid; you are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits so long as the work-related toxic exposure aggravated or exacerbated your condition.
Benefits to which you may be entitled after a work accident involving toxic chemicals include medical benefits, temporary total disability benefits, permanent total disability benefits, and vocational rehabilitation.Benefits for Occupational Illness
Illness arising out of toxic exposures can develop gradually and yet have extremely harmful consequences. As a nurse who slowly develops an occupational illness due to toxic exposures rather than an acute incident, you may find it challenging to show your disability is due to your job. Our lawyers can help safeguard your rights in the event that you’re a nurse who is exposed to toxins as an employee who works in a health care setting if you develop illnesses, skin diseases, environmental illness, vision loss or respiratory diseases, or poisoning as a result. In some situations, several harms develop simultaneously and a nurse must make a claim for medical benefits in connection with various illnesses and symptoms. Medical benefits can include emergency care, along with regular doctor’s visits, medication, and medical equipment.
The amount of benefits to which you’re entitled depends in part on the severity of the occupational illness. For instance, exposure to pathogens on the job could result in illnesses such as HIV or anthrax and these can be not only disabling, but quite expensive to treat.
Tragically, the children of nurses may be born with congenital or musculoskeletal defects or other illnesses when they were exposed to quantities of toxic substances during pregnancy. Additionally, nurses’ unborn children exposed to radiation in the course of the nurse’s employment may suffer from cancer.Death Benefits
In some cases, a nurse’s exposure to toxic substances on the job is fatal. As the loved one of a nurse who died due to a work-related exposure, you may have a claim for death benefits. These can be calculated in several different ways according to the nurse’s average weekly wage.Hire a Chicago Law Firm that Represents Nurses
We understand the risks and stresses imposed on nurses in the workplace. If you’re a nurse who has been harmed by toxic substances on the job, you should call our seasoned Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys in Champaign, Rockford, Quincy, and Aurora, as well as Sangamon, Winnebago, Kane, Cook, and Adams Counties. Call us at 800-444-1525 or 312-263-6330 or complete our online form .