Amid icy weather, injury claims up for homecare workers

January 6, 2017 | News, Home Care News

The recent bout of cold weather had SafeCare BC in the headlines over concerns for homecare workers. The following report is courtesy of CKNW Radio.

It’s not just the elderly suffering from slips and falls due to the cold weather.

Their caregivers are too.

According to SafeCare BC, injury claims for homecare workers were up 600% last month due to treacherous weather conditions.

Executive Director for SafeCare BC Jennifer Lyle says municipalities must be better prepared for winter conditions.

“We’re seeing an increase in the number of homecare and support workers who are experiencing slips and falls as they’re going out into the community to deliver care into people’s homes and this is because of the icy sidewalks.”

Lyle says beyond being painful and dangerous for the workers, it’s having a negative impact on seniors as well.

“There is a number of seniors that rely on homecare and support services just to ensure that they can get their medication managed so that they have support meal preparation, bathing, really basic needs. And what we’re seeing is, the caregivers that are responsible for providing that care are getting injured getting to those seniors’ homes.”

Since 2011, the homecare sector registered a total of 706 WorkSafeBC claims due to slips and falls by homecare workers, costing $6.8-million.

Lyle is reminding residents across Metro Vancouver to watch out for elderly neighbours during cold spells.

Tune in to hear Lyle live on January 6, 2017 at 3:10pm on CBC Radio On The Coast.

Correction: The report incorrectly indicated that home care workers experienced a 600% increase in injuries. The statistic originally reported by SafeCare BC was one care provider reported a 600% increase in incidents. For the original media release click here.