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Toms River, New Jersey, Personal Injury Blog

Remember Funeral Rule protections while funeral planning

The loss of a loved one is a hard situation to be placed in, especially if you're the one who has to make the funeral plans, and the death was unexpected. The funeral is a big financial undertaking, so you should be prepared to have to sort through a host of charges when you're the one handling this task.

One thing to remember is that funeral homes have to give you an itemized estimate of what a service will cost. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) enforces the Funeral Rule, which sets specific standards for the funeral home and provides you with rights to invoke when you're planning a funeral.

There's no safe level of asbestos exposure for exposed workers

Humans find incredible and ingenious ways to use natural resources for all kinds of industrial or commercial purposes. Asbestos has long been a natural resource used in a variety of industries ranging from home construction to shipbuilding due to its insulating properties and ability to slow the spread of fire. Asbestos occurs naturally in mineral deposits that humans can mine, process and use for various industrial purposes.

Companies have made products ranging from insulation to brake pads using asbestos, which means that workers in fields ranging from the Navy to vehicle maintenance and environmental remediation could be at risk of exposure to this dangerous substance.

Birth injuries are serious matters that require attention

Medical malpractice encompasses a host of situations. One of these is birth injuries. Women who go into the hospital or a birth center expect to deliver healthy babies without having any issues. Unfortunately, there are times when things go wrong. These can put a mother and her baby in danger.

It's estimated that five out of every 1,000 babies will have a birth injury. These are the result of a medical professional who doesn't handle something during the birth properly. While you may automatically think first of your doctor's liability, the real fault could lie with any member of your labor and delivery team.

Drivers should be cautious following spring time change

As most people are aware, daylight saving time recently came into effect in most areas of the country, including New Jersey. What people may not know is that "springing forward" one hour in March can lead to a higher rate of traffic accidents, including fatal crashes.

According to a nationwide study, which analyzed 732,835 accidents in the United States between 1996 and 2017, fatal car accidents increase by 6% after the spring change of the clocks. In the study, this increase was consistent across the years, even after daylight saving was bumped up from April to March.

Misdiagnosis errors common in U.S.

Medical diagnosis errors are alarmingly common in New Jersey and across the United States, according to multiple studies. However, experts say there are several measures health professionals can take to help reduce the risk of misdiagnosis for patients.

Each year, approximately 12 million Americans are affected by misdiagnosis issues nationwide, according to a 2014 report published in the journal BMJ Quality & Safety. Of those, around half are estimated to be "potentially harmful." In addition, a report by the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine estimated that between 40,000 and 80,000 U.S. patients die from misdiagnosis complications every year.

Know these points about prolonged sitting for work

People sometimes think of office work or being able to drive for work as harmless jobs. These individuals don't realize that there are risks that come with having to sit for prolonged periods. It is imperative that people who do these jobs know how ergonomics can impact their life.

Slouching when you sit can lead to an overstretching of the spine. This puts pressure on the discs and can lead to the ligaments suffering damage. You might notice that you have neck, back, arm, and leg pain if you've been sitting in an unnatural position for too long. Instead of suffering through that pain, you can use these tips to reduce the impact prolonged sitting has on your body.

Tips for taking medication without incident

Those who take multiple medications are at an increased risk of being the victim of an adverse drug event. Therefore, it is important that those who are taking any type of medication know how to use it properly. For instance, it is not a good idea to chew a pill that is not supposed to be chewed or to cut a pill in half unless a doctor says it's acceptable to do so.

It is also important to use the right type of spoon or syringe when taking a medication. Patients are encouraged to know their dose as taking too much of a liquid or too many pills can cause significant side effects. In many cases, dosage requirements for children are different than those for adults. Dosage requirements may also vary based on a person's height and weight. Therefore, it is important that individuals are honest with their doctors when disclosing that information.

What falls under the OSHA Laboratory Standard

Lab workers in New Jersey, as elsewhere, are protected under OSHA's Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories Standards, otherwise known as the Laboratory Standard. Of course, whether employers fulfill this standard is another matter. Below are just a few of the steps that employers are supposed to take to protect their lab workers.

The standard first requires employers to designate a qualified individual as a chemical hygiene officer, who is in charge of coming up with a chemical hygiene plan and putting it into action. The plan must cover practices that limit workers' exposure to hazardous chemicals, setting up things like engineering controls and rules for personal protective equipment. It may also touch on decontamination procedures and waste handling.

Phone use among nurses may increase rate of errors

Anyone who works in the medical field in New Jersey knows how important it is to stay focused on the job. A report published in JAMA Pediatrics shows that errors can become more frequent among nurses who are distracted by their phones. For their study, researchers analyzed the behavior of 257 nurses in pediatric intensive care units and how this affected 3,308 patients.

Around half of these nurses received a call on their phones 10 minutes before administering medication to a patient. The rate of medication errors was 3.7% for these nurses whereas those who did not receive a call had an error rate of 3.1%. The error rate did not change when nurses received a text message, though previous research has shown that notifications from social media do change it.

Preventing falls in the workplace in three easy steps

New Jersey residents who work in construction are probably aware that they run a huge risk of being injured or killed in a fall. Fall protection guidelines are the most frequently violated of all OSHA guidelines. Fatal falls account for some 15% of all worker deaths, including 33% of all construction worker deaths. OSHA and three other government agencies have created a three-step plan for preventing falls.

Employers should, first of all, plan ahead and know when a job will require workers to be on elevated surfaces like ladders, scaffolds, cranes and rooftops. During this planning phase, employers must take note of what safety equipment and training employees need. The second and third steps are simply to provide this equipment and training.

Contact R.C. Shea & Associates, Counsellors At Law

Call our Toms River office at 732-505-1212, our Manchester office at 732-408-WILL (9455), our Brick office at 732-451-0800, or call us toll free at 800-556-SHEA (7432). You can also contact our firm online.

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R.C. Shea & Associates, Counsellors at Law
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