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Workplace Injuries and Essential Workers During Coronavirus

A masked female, one of our essential workers looks at the camera

We all owe gratitude to Lancaster’s essential workers on the front lines. They’re working in stressful conditions, often risking getting injured on the job.

Essential Workers and Risk of Injury

Essential workers make sure we are all safe, fed, and have what we need. In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, they provide a sense of security for us all. But every day that they continue to work, they risk not only exposure to the virus, but getting injured on the job. With longer hours and stressful working conditions, those risks are even higher than normal.

Who are essential workers?

When Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf ordered a state-wide stay at home order as the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic worsened, he outlined exceptions for certain jobs, to include:

  • Health care and public health workers
  • Law enforcement, public safety and first responders
  • Food and agriculture workers
  • Energy employees
  • Water and wastewater employees
  • Transportation and logistics
  • Public works
  • Critical manufacturing
  • Telecommunications
  • Hazardous materials and chemical workers

What if essential workers get injured during the pandemic?

Many of the jobs deemed essential during the coronavirus pandemic are those at risk of injury. They are physically demanding, requiring long hours or tasks that can strain the body. Added stress, like many are experiencing now, can increase the likelihood of injury.

If an essential worker becomes injured during this time, they can file for worker’s compensation. All of the legal protections that are in place still apply.

What 3 steps should essential workers take if they become injured?

Essential workers should follow the following three steps if injured on the job:

  1. Report the injury to your supervisor as soon as possible.
  2. Seek medical treatment. In an emergency situation go to the ER. Otherwise, ask your Employer for a “Panel List” of approved providers.
  3. Know your rights – Call 1-800-HURT-NOW for a free consultation with an attorney.

The attorneys at Georgelis Law Firm can explain your options and benefits and guide you through the process.

Where can essential workers get more information on the coronavirus response in PA?

The state of Pennsylvania offers updates on the state response, restrictions and recommendations on their website. This includes a list of life-sustaining businesses that may employ essential workers.


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