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Training fails to prevent injuries

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Training nurses in manual handling does not prevent back injuries, a controversial Finnish study suggests.

A review of 11 studies – eight of which dealt with healthcare workers who manually handled patients – found no evidence that training, with or without lifting equipment, was effective in the prevention of back pain.

Either the techniques used did not reduce the risk of injury, or training did not lead to adequate changes in practice, the authors suggested in the BMJ online.

But Sharon Horan, RCN professional nursing adviser for occupational health, said nurses should continue to adhere to current guidelines. 'The RCN won’t be changing its advice based on the results of one review,' she said.

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