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What are Musculoskeletal Programs?

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Musculoskeletal conditions affect people of all ages, consequently affecting all industries and business sectors.

From constriction employees to office workers, the risks are just as high for those who are deskbound as they are for those who do manual labor. Each workplace has its own circumstances that can impact musculoskeletal wellness; however, it is the small and medium organizations that will be affected more by unplanned absences and understaffing.   

As the global population ages, helping employees stay fit and productive needs to be a priority for employers.  

What is Musculoskeletal Health?

In a corporate setting, musculoskeletal health is defined as a coordinated and sustained effort to lower the risk of muscle, joint, tendon, and nerve injuries & illnesses.

Musculoskeletal conditions are prevalent across all ages and significantly affect one’s mobility and dexterity.

The reduction of unplanned absences and the increase of productivity of the workforce alone is a powerful incentive for employers to find solutions to musculoskeletal disorders.   

What are some Musculoskeletal Conditions?

  • Lower back pain. 
  • Muscle injuries. 
  • Osteoporosis and other bone issues. 
  • Neck pain. 
  • Joint pain and arthritis. 
  • Gout. 
  • Ligament issues. 
  • Inflammatory diseases. 

The most widespread musculoskeletal disorders affecting employees are:  

  • Tension neck syndrome. 
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome. 
  • Lower back pain. 

Musculoskeletal conditions account for the greatest proportion of non-cancer persistent pain. It is not a surprise that musculoskeletal conditions are linked with depression, anxiety, and overall lower quality of life.

People suffering from musculoskeletal disorders also have an increased risk of developing other chronic health conditions.   

How do Musculoskeletal Programs Work?

Most employers offer subsidized gym memberships or give access to an on-site fitness facility.

Small and medium enterprises usually do not have the resources to devote to an on-site fitness facility. Furthermore, gym discounts lack the meaningful and knowledge-driven approach to maintaining health that guided coaching offers.

The need for a more holistic approach to health and injury prevention, therefore, facilitates the adoption of musculoskeletal programs. 

The goal of musculoskeletal programs is to improve employees’ strength, flexibility, and mobility through exercises and activities similar to the job.

Employees also receive targeted exercises and instructions to increase their musculoskeletal knowledge and prevent future injuries. Coaching sessions target posture changes, showing examples of appropriate movement patterns, and strategies to reduce pain discomfort.  

Many programs include early intervention screening and first aid instructions for safer job performance.

Rehabilitation principles are an important part of musculoskeletal programs as they help employees adjust faster to work after recovering and returning from an injury.  

Corporate Musculoskeletal Programs

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Why should Employers Care about it?

  • Musculoskeletal disorders account for more healthcare spending than any other single health condition. 
  • Musculoskeletal injuries account for 28% of all occupational injuries and they are the largest single category of workplace injury. 
  • Workplace-caused musculoskeletal disorders account for 34% of lost workdays. 
  • Musculoskeletal disorders are one of the predominant reasons for pain and disabilities among workers in America. 
  • Musculoskeletal injuries account for one out of every three dollars spent on workers’ compensation. 
  • An additional $100 billion is spent on indirect costs by employers annually in hiring and training new hires. 
  • Musculoskeletal disorders cause an imbalance between hours paid and hours worked resulting in a significant decrease in employee productivity. 
  • Musculoskeletal disorders account for more than 600,000 injuries and illnesses caused by workplace activity. 
  • Low back pain is the single leading cause of disability globally. 

What are the Benefits to the Employer?

  • Improved employee availability by having fewer unscheduled absences. 
  • Improved employee productivity. 
  • Lower employee turnover due to fewer musculoskeletal injuries. 
  • Lower hiring and staffing expenditures. 
  • Lower musculoskeletal injury rates. 
  • Fewer musculoskeletal claims. 
  • Legally compliant workplace. 
  • Better informed employees on the physical requirements of the job. 

In conclusion, employers have an obligation to make the workplace safe and keep employees healthy.

Moreover, there is a significant financial incentive to adopt these programs. The outcome of their adaptation would be a more productive workplace and less prone to injuries and illnesses.   

Written by Shortlister Editorial Team
Written by Shortlister Editorial Team

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