Lower Your Company’s Workers’ Compensation Costs with On-site Injury Prevention and Ergonomics/Bionomics Training
Workers’ compensation costs are one of the highest expenses in most companies. Savvy companies looking for a way to put a stop to these rising costs are using proven injury prevention programs that lower claims and insurance costs and raise productivity. Besides reducing recordable injuries, Dr. Arnoldo Daniel Gutiérrez, your San Antonio Chiropractic Orthopedist is an injury prevention consultant with Future Industrial Technologies. Dr. Gutiérrez has been an injury prevention consultant with Future Industrial Technologies since the year 2000 and is part of a nationwide network of injury preventions specialists. No company is too big or too small to put injury prevention measures to work.

If you want to see an estimate of how much injuries cost click the link below:
https://www.osha.gov/dcsp/smallbusiness/safetypays/estimator.html

If you are ready to find out if your company qualifies for any of these programs to reduce these avoidable injuries call Dr. Gutiérrez for a phone or in person consultation at
(888) 211-4454 Ext 101.

Future Industrial Technologies Mission

FIT’s mission is to help organizations to significantly reduce workers’ compensation costs and lost work days by helping employees to prevent painful and life altering sprain/strain injuries on AND off the job; to prevent costly surgeries and having to take opiate medications to relieve pain; to help people to be able to lead active and healthy lifestyles.

FIT’s philosophy is to deliver better training and service than our customers expect and to be the largest sprain/strain injury prevention company in North America.

Ergonomics vs. Bionomics

The difference between ergonomics and Bionomics is that the focus is not on the physical environment (ergonomics) per se, but on the proper management of the body. Bionomics was conceived as an answer to the prevalence and high costs of work related sprain/strain type injuries. It is said that 80% of the population will experience a back-related injury in their lifetime.

Back injuries, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, and other injuries of this ilk, now termed musculoskeletal disorders, cost U.S. industry $60 billion per year. Lifestyles of millions of people are affected by the pain and discomfort of these unnecessary injuries. Attempts to prevent these injuries in the past have mostly gone unrewarded.

The modification of one’s physical environment and the use of mechanical assistance have helped to lessen the exposure to physical stress for many employees. However, musculoskeletal disorders continue to plague our workplace. In healthcare alone MSD’s represent over 60% of the workers compensation costs in most hospitals.

FIT decided to find out why this problem had gone unabated and to create a solution that could put a person in charge of their health rather than remain a waiting victim of a serious injury that could affect their life forever.

The first question was why are sprain/strain injuries so prevalent? If we can teach an athlete to perform amazing physical feats such as performing a backflip on a balance beam that is four inches wide and four feet off the ground and do it with grace; if we can teach a four-year old how to swim; and we can teach a medical student how to perform brain surgery; then why could we not train someone how to lift a tool box correctly or another to position their workstation more safely?

It is safe to say that keyboards or boxes or wheelbarrows have never attacked anyone, yet they continue to cause injuries; or do they? What is the real source of sprain/strain injuries?
In trying to answer this question we noticed something so pervasive it actually has gone unseen. We, as a society, have never truly been taught how to correctly use our bodies while doing activities of daily living! Think about it.

Have you ever noticed your daughter or son lifting something improperly? Do you notice people at airports lifting luggage off the carousel while twisting almost every time? Do you see fellow office workers not using their $500 chairs as was intended? From grade school through college through our professional lives this fundamental education, of how to properly position our bodies while conducting life’s activities, has been omitted.

Observe the office worker extending their arms (15% of their body weight) to reach for the keyboard and mouse; observe the mother lifting her baby; observe the child lifting their backpack; observe the truck driver sitting, exiting the vehicle and lifting loads; observe the nurse repositioning the patient; and observe travelers lifting their luggage at airports, and you will find one basic thing in common.

We do not perform activities of daily living correctly, which cause, like the ocean’s waves on the sand, a slow innocent change in our structure. Back injuries, Carpal Tunnel, and other sprain/strain are mostly caused by innocent frequent stresses that add up over time. Ignored, the subtle and sometimes not so subtle, physical warnings (pain) accumulate and become exacerbated by repetitive activities, sustained postures, and other factors experienced on and off the job.

The lack of fundamental training on how to use our own bodies correctly results in innocent physical stress, which over time leads to the costly cycle of discomfort, pain, injury and quality of life issues. No wonder 80% of our population experiences back pain and our workers comp costs are prohibitively high.

The Solution is Bionomics

It has been thoroughly proven, by dramatic reduction in work related injuries, that employees can learn how to be responsible for their own physical well-being. A workable training methodology has finally been developed.

Employers do not want their employees hurt, unions do not want their members injured, and employees do not want to be in pain. There is no conflict of interest.

The body is not an inferior product; we just never learned how to use it properly.

What is the Backsafe® Program?

The Backsafe® Injury Prevention Program prevents back, shoulder, neck, upper & lower extremity injuries and is customized for any job description (except office workers—see Sittingsafe®). These practical workshops are conducted on location and are designed to change employees’ physical behavior.

What is the Sittingsafe® Program?

Sittingsafe® goes beyond ergonomics and uses the bionomic-based philosophy that one must do a physical skill to truly learn it. This practical workshop teaches employees for the first time in their lives how to ergonomically adjust any workstation for their specific needs. Employees usually don’t need additional or fancy ergonomic equipment or furniture. In many instances they mainly need to know how to correctly utilize what they have already. Employees gladly discover the true sources of their fatigue, discomfort, and pain and learn customized techniques on how to immediately alleviate it.

Here are some reasons why the Backsafe® and Sittingsafe® programs make good business sense:

  1. Workers are a key asset for any business organization. Keeping them productive serves employers, unions and employees alike.
  2. Musculoskeletal disorders are entirely preventable. They cost North American businesses billions of dollars each year and can dramatically affect the quality of life of well-intentioned employees.
  3. Effective ergonomic programs focus on ways to reduce costs to companies by:
    reducing injuries
    reducing absenteeism
    reducing errors
    maximizing productivity
  4. Successful ergonomic programs are always cost effective. They must be designed to yield a high return on investment.
  5. A custom designed injury prevention training program that effectively educates workers on how to prevent back injuries, carpal tunnel syndrome and other sprain/strain injuries can have a dramatic, positive impact on corporate profits.


How drivers can avoid injuries on the job

Truck drivers often receive training in order to utilize their equipment in a secure fashion that minimize risks for job site injuries. However, potential dangers lurk in mundane aspects of truck operations. Without proper care and technique, debilitating injury can result from the most insignificant actions. How many times have you heard of someone doing something simple then having excruciating pain? Like just simply bending over to pick up something light and then can’t straighten back up. This happens all too often. Dr. Gutiérrez along with Future Industrial Technologies have made it their mission to bring an end to these injuries. These injuries known as Cumulative Microtrauma (CMT) Disorders such as back, neck, shoulder and knee injuries, which cost North American companies over $20 billion a year! According to the US Department of Labor, the direct and indirect costs of just one sprain or strain injury can reach upwards of $60,000. Not to mention the personal pain and possibly life altering effects of these types of injuries.

As a specialist in occupational injury prevention and ergonomics, Dr. Arnoldo Daniel Gutiérrez your San Antonio Chiropractic Orthopedist feels that it is extremely important that drivers take proper care to protect themselves.

In my 28+ years of experience, excluding auto accident injuries, many cases I have seen of muscle, joint and disc injuries were caused by the accumulation of many little seemingly innocent things that eventually add up until something wears down and “breaks” –Dr. Gutiérrez
Unfortunately, most people don’t know that these little things are accumulating stress and tension nor do they know how to remove the stress and tension that has already been building up. Little by little, little things add up into big things. Many people sabotage their own bodies in a variety of “little” ways throughout the day that add up over years. Many don’t even realize how much pressure they are potentially putting on their bodies. Backs, shoulders and other body parts eventually give out after years of accumulated stress yet they don’t have any idea what happened.

Even something as simple as sitting in your truck for long periods can have significant impact. Sitting for long duration causes muscle tightness in the hamstrings and hip flexors. These muscles directly affect the knee joints, hips and low back which are all common areas for drivers to experience pain and discomfort. Chest muscles get tight from the arms-forward position, pulling the shoulder joints into an at-risk position and putting tension in the upper back and neck. Gripping the steering wheel causes the flexion muscles of the hands and forearms to be tight as well. The solution, is strategic and therapeutic stretches that will help to maintain the neutral length of the muscles. The stretches should be done daily, or even several times a day. Tight muscles and tendons are prone to straining and inflammation while joints that are under tension suffer from decreased motion and are prone to arthritis and other degenerative changes over time.

As we get older, our muscles and joints don’t work like they used to, so stretching is important and necessary. Some people roll right out of bed and expect their body to do all kinds of things and it’s just not ready! They put themselves at risk. Proper preparation is needed to reduce the chances of injury in the immediate and in the long run. The stretches taught in the training are easy to do, safe and effective. Some common stretches that we all learned back in gym class are more harmful than they are good. The head/neck roll is a good example — rolling your head backwards is not good for the joints in your neck.

One of the biggest challenges is changing habits. Many workers have been performing their duties in unhealthy fashions for years and will find it hard to change, citing the cliché about old dogs and new tricks. People don’t want to get hurt and they have families who don’t want them to get hurt. It’s not worth being stubborn about holding on to old habits that are just going to put you at greater risk of getting hurt. It’s pretty easy to modify the things you do to be safer once you know how. In the training, we demonstrate this and will feel the difference first hand. Self-preservation and having that one body you have last a lifetime is a strong motivating factor.

If self-preservation isn’t enough, perhaps employers should encourage workers to avoid actively or knowingly contributing to the development of a preventable injury, which could lead to them becoming a burden on their co-workers or their families. While these injuries cause lost production man-hours on a job site, it’s about more than that. It’s about the quality of life enjoyed.

It is just not OK to work hard your whole life and then end up broken for retirement. By then you’ve earned the right to enjoy it and by managing it well, your body can last long enough to allow you to do just that. If you are not thinking that far ahead maybe you should. Most people would agree that they do not want to lose their independence just because the calendar says that are in their 60s or 70s or even 80s.

If you are ready to find out if your company qualifies for any of these programs to reduce these avoidable injuries call Dr. Gutiérrez for a phone or in person consultation at
(888) 211-4454 Ext 101.