Are you getting sick of work — literally? Your job site may be less than ideal, but it shouldn’t make you physically ill. Unfortunately, the reality is that your workplace may subject you to regular contact with hazardous conditions that can cause serious chronic illnesses. Employment-related medical problems are called occupational diseases and are often covered by the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation System.
You may have an occupational disease if your medical issues resulted from exposure in your workplace to:
- Gases and fumes
- Chemicals and solvents
- Extreme temperatures, noise or pressure
- Constant vibration or pressure
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Parasites, viruses, fungi, bacteria, mold and other infectious organisms
Of course, you may have been exposed to any number of hazardous conditions and still not be eligible for benefits. To qualify, be prepared to show that:
- Your condition resulted from repeated work-related exposure.
- The exposure produced a harmful effect.
- The workplace exposure is the proximate cause of the illness.
- A medical diagnosis confirms the illness and its causal relationship to your employment.
The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation lists a schedule of compensable occupational diseases that includes:
- Lead, mercury, phosphorous or arsenic poisoning
- Poisoning by other dangerous chemicals and compounds
- Skin infection or inflammation caused by exposure to certain substances
- Radium poisoning
- Coal miners’ pneumoconiosis
In addition to the many other diseases on this list, you may also receive benefits for a number of other nonscheduled diseases.
If you think there are a lot of hoops to jump through to recover your rightful compensation for an occupational illness, you are correct. You may be unaware you are being exposed to a hazard until the damage is done. In many cases, the disease may be progressive, i.e., not exhibiting symptoms until long after the exposure has ended.
Speaking to an Ohio workers’ compensation law firm is a good start to putting an end to your exposure and getting compensation for your disease.