Employees who are working do not expect to come down with disease that endanger and at times end their lives. Unfortunately, many employees find themselves in this exact situation time and time again. They devote their lives to their jobs and then they get sick because of an illness caused by their job.
Occupational related illnesses cause untold amounts of damage in families across America every year. Lewis & Keller have been representing the interests of injured individuals for more than 30 years.
When it comes to workers’ compensation, many employees fall under the assumption that an actual accident which causes an injury must take place. Contrary to popular belief, workers’ compensation can also come in the form of occupational disease. When a chronic illness or condition of some kind occurs due to a job, work setting or occupational action, this is considered to be an occupational disease.
There are quite a few different types of occupational diseases; however, some are far more prevalent than others. When a disease of some sort arises and the victim believes that it is due to some kind of working condition, the employee is permitted to file a workers’ compensation claim related to the occupation related disease.
What is an Occupational Disease?
Occupational diseases are any chronic disease caused by or due to activities or environmental factors at the work place. There are many different types of these diseases with many different causes. Some causation agents of occupational diseases include:
- Infectious agent
The various agents listed above target different organs that cause the diseases. They have been known to affect the skin, muscles, skeleton, lungs, liver and other parts of the body in devestating ways.
Occupational diseases can be caused by many different occupational hazards that in the work place. There are many different categories of hazards that can be the cause of your health problem. They include:
- Physical hazards (extreme temperatures, noise, electrical, mechanical, etc.)
- Clinical hazards (acid/alkali, solvent, disinfectant, anesthetic gas, etc.)
- Biological hazards (virus, bacteria, protozoa, fungus, plasmodium, etc.)
- Ergonomic hazards (repetitive motion, static motion, lifting weight, etc.)
- Psychosocial hazards (occupational stress, depression and anxiety disorders, sexual harassment, etc.)
When these types of occupational diseases come about, the burden generally falls on the employer or the insurer. These people will work tirelessly to prove that they were not to blame for the cause of disease. Therefore, hiring an experienced personal injury firm to handle the case is essential. Lewis & Keller has years of experience in workers’ compensation litigation. We are prepared to fight for the compensation in which you deserve.
To learn more about your options, please fill out a Free Case Evaluation today.
Common Job Types That Lead to Injuries
First and foremost, victims of occupational diseases must be aware that they are required to report the disease to the employer. Failing to report the onset of an occupational illness may result in an inability to collect workers’ compensation. Therefore, all North Carolina residents must be aware that as soon as a condition arises they are to report the disease to their employer as soon as possible.
The types of occupational diseases typically suffered range significantly based upon the particular job, associated job duties, and the environment in which the job requires workers to endure. It is also important to be aware of the fact that many on-the-job injuries are considered to be connected to an occupational disease. The following are some of the most common on-the-job injuries linked to occupational diseases:
- Brain damage caused by the exposure to formaldehyde, benzene, or any other industrial chemical vapors
- Asbestosis, a lung disease caused by asbestos exposure, with a potential to lead to mesothelioma
- Lung disease and other cancers
- Hearing loss from industrial noise
- Silicosis, a disease caused by the inhaling of silica dust
Types of Occupational Diseases
The employer is held liable for the working conditions available to their workforce. When these conditions fail to meet national standards of safety, a number of lawsuits may be filed to hold these employers and their insurers accountable. Some of the most common occupational diseases include the following:
- Lung Disease
- Lead Poisoning
- Radiation Illness
- Skin Diseases
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Computer Vision Syndrome
The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health is responsible to continually make recommendations and suggestions in regard to preventing work-related illness and injury. Regardless of what types of occupational diseases arise, it is essential for all workers in North Carolina to understand their employee rights.
High Risk Occupations
Prior to taking a new job, all North Carolina residents should take a look at what the job entails as well as the type of working conditions are typically seen. Being aware of these conditions prior to starting a new occupation will help to deter people from at-risk jobs. The following are some of the most high risk occupations in terms of the onset of occupational illness:
- Automobile Repair
- Metal Machine Work
If you are currently working in any of the above occupations, it is essential to pay careful attention to working conditions and your current state of health. When deciding whether or not to file a claim with the Division of Workers’ Compensation it is important to be fully informed. Therefore, accessing the expertise of an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer is imperative.
Keep in mind that the above listing of types of occupational diseases is not exhaustive. As a result, North Carolina residents must pay special attention to the state of their health when taking any new job. If you believe that the adverse working conditions in which you are currently exposed are causing harm to you or a loved one, you must act quickly to determine where you stand. Lewis & Keller is prepared to guide you throughout each step, ensuring that you are informed as you make these important, life changing decisions.
Contact a Knowledgeable Winston-Salem Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
With offices in Winston-Salem and Greensboro, Lewis & Keller has proudly served the state of North Carolina for many years. In this time, we have come to understand the intricacies of workers’ compensation law. With this knowledge, we are able to place our clients in the best position to achieve the compensation that they deserve and that will truly cover their medical costs.
Employers and insurers often take advantage of those filing for workers’ compensation without legal representation. Our Greensboro personal injury law firm would like to ensure that you are not taken advantage of by these people. If you or a loved one has suffered from any occupational disease, Lewis & Keller is here for you.