The daily fight of pharmacy technicians, of dental assistants, of laboratory workers is an invisible one.
Each day, these workers use their hands for repetitive, intricate tasks, and each day they are at risk for an ergonomic injury.
Typically, to reduce or eliminate ergonomic injuries in workers, companies encourage employees to take breaks, to alternate hands, to change the motions being used in the work or modify the setup of the work, and so on.
One company is offering a different solution to this problem.
Ansell, a personal protective equipment manufacturer, has developed single-use ergonomic gloves to reduce the hand fatigue and strain on these workers.
Using what it has called ERGOFORM Design Technology, Ansell developed disposable gloves that strategically enhance fit, feel, tactility and support for workers based on research on typical muscle use.
“Occupational musculoskeletal disorders, such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and tendonitis, are a leading cause of lost workday injury and illness,” said Joe Kubicek, President and General Manager of the Ansell single-use global business unit.
“Gloves designed with ERGOFORM are proven through testing to reduce strenuous muscle effort that may lead to joint, tendon or ligament strain.”
Before certifying gloves as ERGOFORM ones, Ansell tests them in the lab, proving that the gloves offer “measurable advantages to user comfort and long-term hand and arm muscle health.”
“My ideal glove is one that will protect you, and then you forget you’re wearing it,” said Don Cronk, the regulatory affairs and technical services manager for Ansell’s single-use global business unit who showcased the new technology during the 2015 National Safety Council Congress & Expo in Atlanta.
At NSC 2015, Cronk invited attendees to participate in a virtual experience that showed the potential for strain and fatigue on hand muscles and nerves from repetitive motions. Participants slid their hands under an interactive screen that guided them through certain movements and showed them the impact on their muscles.
“The demonstration is to have a conversation about ergonomics,” Cronk said.
The ERGOFORM Design Technology is available for four glove styles so far – Microflex XCEED, Microflex Neogard, TouchNTuff 73-300 and TouchNTuff 73-500, and will expand to more styles next year.