Simple steps to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a painful hand and wrist condition that affects millions of Americans every year. CTS occurs when a nerve running across your arms to your wrists and hands has been pinched or damaged, making your grip weaker and your arms and hands feel painful, tender, or numb.

Employees who are exposed to either ergonomically-poor workplaces or repetitive and forceful hand activities are most vulnerable to CTS. To prevent CTS while working, make sure that your workplace tools are ergonomically designed to reduce CTS risk. Shaking out your hands periodically while performing repetitive duties may also help relieve hand tightness and stress. Finally, giving your hands regular breaks can ease any pressure that could damage the median nerve. You can do this by gently stretching, bending, and rotating your wrists and hands.

It is important for employers to ensure that workers are free from any injury that may compromise the individual or group’s safety. At WorkSTEPS, we help business owners and managers determine if a candidate employee or a returning worker could perform duties that require repetitive hand functions. Call us at (512) 617-4100 to learn more about our programs.

How to ensure your fit-for-duty test complies with the law

Fit-for-duty tests are conducted to ensure that a worker is physically and psychologically able to perform his tasks without causing harm to himself and to others. These exams are strictly targeted, which means it is limited to assessing the worker’s capability to perform specific job functions. They are never designed to acquire irrelevant, possibly discriminatory details, such as hereditary conditions.

A fit-for-duty exam that is perceived to be discriminatory or prejudicial could violate the law. As such, it is important for employers and managers to seek only the information that is relevant to the job function involved. Employers may also consider making fit-for-duty exams a part of their workplace policy by establishing who are required to take the exams, such as those returning from extensive medical leave, or those who have shown non-standard behavior in the workplace that could cause harm.

At WorkSTEPS, we offer scientific and highly-efficient fit-for-duty examinations that are in full compliance with the law. Call us at (512) 617-4100 to learn how fit-for-duty examinations should be done.

Firefighters need regular post-employment physical agility testing

Firefighters have a noble but demanding mandate of protecting the community from disaster situations, including fires. As such, workers in this field are required to be physically and mentally fit to deal with the everyday hazards associated with their work. The demanding nature of firefighting also requires them to be assessed on a regular basis to ensure that they are meeting the physical criteria necessary to perform their tasks safely.

Post-employment physical agility tests monitor firefighters’ capability to meet the demands of their duty through scientific and quantifiable screening. Tests of this type should also be highly job-related, and should in no way discriminate against workers on the basis of race, age, or sex.

WorkSTEPS offers post-employment physical agility tests designed to accurately measure a firefighter’s capabilities, which he or she needs during the most critical phases of firefighting and other emergency situations. Call us at (512) 617-4100 to learn more about our services today.