One research interest centers around work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDSs), which are enormously costly to employers, their insurers, the injured workers and their families. I design surveys to expose and calculate the indirect costs from work-related MSDs and to determine the effectives of preventive interventions. I survey workers’ compensation claimants, among poultry workers and long-term caregivers. MSDs make long-term caregiving more dangerous than construction work. These injuries are largely due to patient transfers. They are preventable with the use of mechanical lifting devices. My research work has included a pilot intervention featuring the use of mechanical-lift equipment as well as a cultural change supporting the use of equipment. I am currently preparing to “scale up” the pilot intervention in partnership with workers’ compensation insurers. Also, along with Workers’ Compensation partners I plan to survey long-term care facilities to determine whether adequate numbers of lift equipment and the cultural climate to support their use are related to workers’ compensation costs and resident well-being.
Another research interest involves a surveillance of depleted uranium (DU) exposed veterans headed by Dr. McDiarmid. I am interested in discovering and documenting any changes over time typical of heavy metal poisoning that are a function of the body burden of DU.
Teaching interests include resident training in the scope and prevention of work-related MSDs, collaborative research and survey design.