BWC funding workplace safety research at BGSU

BOWLING GREEN, O.— Bowling Green State University has been awarded a $250,000 research grant from The Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) and Ohio Board of Regents to improve workplace safety in nursing homes. BGSU is one of six higher education institutions in Ohio selected for $2 million in total funding for nine research proposals.

BGSU's psychology department will conduct research into preventing injuries, assault and abuse of Nurse Aides working in long-term residential settings. The long-term objective of the project is to improve the well-being of nurse aides and reduce these incidents in long-term care settings throughout Ohio.

"Nurses in Ohio experience very high rates of injuries that are due to care-giving activities as well as physical aggression, verbal abuse and sexual assault from patients and residents," said Dr. William H. O'Brien, professor of psychology. "Our two-year project aims to identify risk factors for injuries, develop and evaluate a comprehensive injury reduction intervention, and share our findings with nurse aides, employers, and other researchers."

"While workplace safety and accident prevention have long been part of our mission at BWC, we are pleased to now champion research in the area of occupational safety and health research," said BWC Administrator/CEO Steve Buehrer. "We are excited to partner with some of the finest academic institutions in Ohio to support research that could shift thinking on current workplace safety practices and introduce innovative approaches to preventing injuries and illnesses among Ohio's workforce."

BWC created the research grant program as a part of the Another Billion Back plan that returned $1 billion to Ohio public and private employers last summer. The program is designed to support advanced research and promote innovation in the areas of workplace safety and health.