Work Related Illness/Injury

Fire, Explosion, Police, Ambulance, Bomb Threat, Violence: CALL 911

Always report medical emergencies and life-threatening hazardous material spills, including after hours, weekends, or holidays.

If you are injured at work, always inform your supervisor and seek medical attention at the appropriate facility (listed below) whenever necessary or if you are advised to do so.  Complete a First Report of Injury and notify EHS of all work-related injuries/illnesses (see below).

On-Site Medical Care:

On site treatment will depend on the material/hazard you are potentially exposed to:

Biological:

Thoroughly wash the exposed area with mild soap and water and remove any contaminated clothing; eyes should be rinsed using an eyewash.  Seek medical attention immediately if: 

  • The exposure involves a splash of material in the eyes, mouth or nose;
  • The exposed skin has been damaged and is non-intact; or
  • There is parenteral contact, e.g., a needlestick, cut from a sharp object, etc.

If you become ill and do not immediately associate your illness with hazards at work, it is still important to inform your physician about what you do and the hazardous materials that are present, especially if you work in a laboratory.

Chemical:

For a chemical splashes in your eyes, time is of the essence.  Go immediately to the eyewash station:

  1. Begin to flush eyes.
  2. Hold your eyes open with your fingers.
  3. Roll your eyes.
  4. Flush for a full fifteen minutes.
  5. Take out your contacts.

For a chemical splash to the body:

  1. Immediately flush the affected area.
  2. Flush for a full fifteen minutes.
  3. Remove contaminated clothing, jewelry, and shoes.
  4. Use a clean lab coat to provide the victim with privacy and warmth.

Radiation:

Contamination - Thoroughly wash the exposed area with mild soap and water and remove any contaminated clothing.  Contact radiation safety immediately so that a dose assessment can be performed.
Exposure – It is extremely unlikely that an occupational radiation exposure would necessitate medical care.  Contact EHS (335-8501) if you are concerned about a radiation exposure.

Medical Treatment Locations
 

IN THE EVENT OF AN EMERGENCY OR INJURY OUTSIDE OF REGULAR CLINIC HOURS, GO TO THE UIHC EMERGENCY TREATMENT CENTER (ETC)

UI Employees -

  • Bloodborne Pathogen (blood/body fluid) related injuries - University Employee Health Clinic (UEHC)
    • Call the STICK (78425) line and follow up with UEHC on the same business day, if possible, or next business day.
    • Location: General Hospital, first floor Boyd Tower near Elevator A., Phone: 356-3631, 
    • Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • All Other Non-emergency work injuries - UI Occupational Health
    • Location: 3 Lions Dr. North Liberty, IA Phone Number: 319-356-3335 or 1-800-327-5605; Hours: Mon-Fri 8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.  Always call to inform the clinic that you are coming. 

Students -

Hourly Employees:
Students who are injured as a result of their employment with the University MUST follow the instructions listed below. This includes students who are injured while performing duties for which they receive a stipend.

  • Bloodborne Pathogen (blood/body fluid) related injuries - University Employee Health Clinic (UEHC)
    • Call the STICK (78425) line and follow up with UEHC on the same business day, if possible, or next business day.
    • Location: General Hospital, first floor Boyd Tower near Elevator A., Phone: 356-3631, 
    • Hours: 7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • All Other Non-emergency work injuries - UI Occupational Health
    • Location: 3 Lions Dr. North Liberty, IA Phone Number: 319-356-3335 or 1-800-327-5605 Hours: Mon-Fri 8:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m.  Always call to inform the clinic that you are coming. 
  • Non-work related injuries - Student Health Services
    • Location: 4189 Westlawn South, 200 Newton Road, Phone Numbers 335-8394 or 335-8370) 
    • Hours: (see website)

Non-Paid:

  • For ALL non-emergency injuries - Student Health Services
    • Location: 4189 Westlawn South, 200 Newton Road, Phone Numbers 335-8394 or 335-8370) 
    • Hours: (see website)

Non-Emergencies -

  • University of Iowa Campus Police can be reached at 335-5022 for non-emergencies.
  • EHS can be reached for assistance at 335-8501 from 8 am - 5 pm, Mondays through Fridays.

For all work injuries or accidents, employees must receive care from treatment locations authorized by the workers compensation insurance claims administrator to receive benefits for medical payments and work absences.  More information is available on the UI Worker's Compensation site.  

Illness/Injury Reporting

First Report of Injury Form

The First Report of Injury form needs to be filed electronically at the HR Self-Service site  within 24 hours of the incident. (This form is located within Self-Service under the Personnel tab, Benefits, Workers Compensation - First Report of Injury.) Any employee on campus may complete a First Report of Injury. Once the report is submitted to the UI Benefits Office, automatic e-mail notifications will be sent to the injured employee, their supervisor, and the HR Unit Representative.

Required Departmental Notifications

All work-related incidents should be reported to EHS, including those involving minor spills, fires, or injuries.

  • Depending on the material involved, EHS may be required to report the incident to regulatory bodies, as part of the regulations by which we must abide.  This is a requirement and no one should fear any negative consequences from reporting incidents. Please be mindful that the University of Iowa places high importance on prompt reporting.

Immediately report any serious work-related incident to EHS (335-8501) or Human Resources (335-2676), specifically one that results in 

  • an amputation, 
  • in-patient hospitalization, 
  • loss of an eye, or
  • death.  

For serious work-related incidents of this nature, regulations mandate that IOSH be notified within certain time-restrictions.  If the incident occurs after-hours or on a weekend, contact Department of Public Safety (335-5022) who will notify EHS after-hours emergency staff.

Investigation of the Incident

It is important that an incident investigation be conducted by department supervision as soon as possible when an employee is injured on the job.  This also includes incidents that were near misses that could have caused a very serious injury.  Incident investigations are fact finding, not faulting finding missions.

Following submission of the first report of injury form, the supervisor will receive an email with an incident investigation form.  This form should be used to investigate a work related employee injury or illness and returned to EHS.  Once completed, this form should be e-mailed to EHS-Investigation@uiowa.edu and your Occupational Safety Representative (if applicable).  The following steps should be included in your investigation:

  • Secure and Collect Evidence.  When applicable secure the area where the incident occurred to preserve as much evidence as possible.  Photographs, etc., can also be a very valuable aid for future reference.
  • Identify Potential Witnesses.  Determine if any employees or others saw, heard or detected anything that could contribute to the investigation.
  • Conduct interviews.  Talk to each employee and witness separately, focusing on who, what, when, where, why, how of the incident.  Ask open-ended questions to allow the person interviewed to respond openly and freely.  Take written notes of responses made by individuals.
  • Review all Data.  Collect and study all data and reports that are relevant to the case looking for root causes that were involved or contributed to the incident, including what in the management system operation failed.
  • Prepare the Incident Investigation Form. Record only facts, not your opinions. 
  • Implement Corrective Action.  Determine what corrective action is needed and implement the necessary change to prevent future incidents.
  • Follow-up.  Check back to make sure that the appropriate remedies are in place and working as intended.

Be prepared that as a result of the investigation you may not always like what you have found or want to accept the facts reveled at the moment.  EHS is about maintaining a productive quality of life through work processes that encourage good work habits, attitudes and management leadership.

  • If you have questions about how to do an incident investigation, ICON course W526OS ‘Incident Investigation Training’ is available to assist you with the process or you may contact EHS staff (335-8501) for additional assistance.