Utilizing Key Item Method to Manage Musculoskeletal Disorders in a Hospital Workplace

Annu Int Conf IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2019 Jul;2019:3420-3423. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2019.8857649.


Management of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) is a necessity for the modern work environment. In hospitals, these disorders have a particularly high frequency among health care workers whose work entails lifting and transporting patients as well as washing, dressing and feeding them. This paper, presents an electronic application which is based on the method of basic items (KIM - Key Item Method) in order to reduce incidents of MSDs resulting from manual transport of loads in healthcare facilities. The sample consisted of 15 female hospital meal servers from Metaxa Hospital (Piraeus, Greece) in order to assess the activities of lifting, carrying, transporting, pushing and pulling of loads which are part of their daily work duties. The key requirement for the application was not only helping the risk assessment but also leading to targeted, easily applicable and low cost corrective measures. The results of this electronic tool application showed increased usability and benefits which were associated with the used database and the detailed information relatively to the corrective measures, such as training of the employees to change body posture, replacement of wheels on trolleys and redesigning of serving aisles which proved beneficial.

MeSH terms

  • Databases, Factual
  • Female
  • Greece
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Internet
  • Lifting
  • Musculoskeletal Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Occupational Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Posture
  • Risk Assessment
  • Software
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Task Performance and Analysis*
  • Workplace