Blogs Arbeidshygiënisten

Good Clean Fun: Cleaning Considerations for Elastomeric Respirators

Valentine’s Day is a day for all of us to reflect on love and relationships. With so much romance in the air, we began to think about what makes for a lasting relationship? How can we all achieve our own happily ever after? Being the relationship experts that we are here at NIOSH, we have some tips for your love life. When it comes to a long-lasting relationship, it is important to encourage the best out of each other. Successful partnership are ones in which you can confidently rely on your partner. This requires dedication when things get messy. This

Promoting Worker Well-Being through Maternal and Child Health: Breastfeeding Accommodations in the Workplace

As one of the fastest-growing segments of the U.S. labor force, the contributions of working mothers are vital to a strong economy. Yet working mothers can also struggle to balance their career and work demands with reproductive plans and caregiving. As a holistic approach to worker well-being, Total Worker Health® encourages policies and practices that simultaneously protect workers while also improving their health and well-being—such as providing the work-related support to sustain an employee’s decision to breastfeed. Breastfeeding has many health benefits for both moms and babies. For mothers, breastfeeding reduces their risk of ovarian cancer, breast cancer, type 2

Preventing Electrocution of Construction Contract Workers

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recently released a report based upon U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) data showing that 77% of the 325 contract worker electrocutions that occurred from 2012-2016 involved workers employed in the construction industry (NFPA 2018). Nearly 60% of the electrocutions were caused by direct contact with electricity. Construction workers account for a large portion of electrical injuries in the US each year. In 2015, for example, 61% of all US workplace electrocutions occurred in construction (82 of 134 total deaths), but these data do not tell the whole story.

Exploring Individual and Organizational Stress-reducing Interventions across Industries

Physical and mental job stress are critical drivers of individual health problems and organizational and societal costs. Health effects of stress lead to higher absenteeism, turnover, and loss of productivity for organizations, as well as higher healthcare expenditures. Long-term impact of stress on employees leads to chronic health conditions. Workplace interventions can help working adults reduce stress which in turn may reduce the impact of chronic health conditions. In May 2018, research on stress-reducing interventions was presented at the 2nd International Symposium to Advance Total Worker Health®. The purpose of this project was to describe stress interventions delivered in the

NIOSH, Wiki Education Foundation, and Harvard University Work Together to Make Occupational Safety and Health Content Accessible to All

Choosing the right final project for a graduate level course can be a daunting responsibility for any instructor. Harvard Research Scientist and Instructor Dr. Diana Ceballos heard NIOSH researcher Dr. Thais Morata share details at a NORA conference about NIOSH’s collaboration with academia and Wikipedia to teach students science translation and knew it was a perfect match. After just a few emails and quickly enrolling to use the Wiki Education Foundation platform, an incredible new way of teaching had begun. The partnerships created between NIOSH, Wiki Education Foundation, and university programs to expand and improve occupational safety and health content

NIOSH Info: What was hot in 2018

  It’s the season of reflection and of lists. We’ve looked back at 2018 to see what NIOSH information was most popular and compiled lists of the 2018 top five most accessed NIOSH blogs, tweets, web pages, search terms, publications and Facebook posts. Instagram Instagram is our fastest growing social media platform. In 2018, we gained over 1,200 followers bringing our total followers to 2,287. We began sharing short animated clips on our platform highlighting our research, as well as the photos Instagramers are used to seeing. Our post with the most impressions as well as most engagement highlighted our

North Pole Medical Mystery SOLVED!

Crisis averted. Barring severe weather issues or a catastrophe, it looks like children around the world will receive their presents now that the elves are healthy and back at work. (Read the case details here). After Santa requested a NIOSH Health Hazard Evaluation, NIOSH researchers were mysteriously transported to the North Pole to try to figure out what was causing elves in the toy shop to suffer from congestion, cough, shortness of breath, sore throats, burning eyes, and fatigue. NIOSH researchers interviewed the elves concerning their health and work environment. Researchers also conducted air sampling. NIOSH investigators evaluated the toy shop ventilation

Workplace Medical Mystery at the North Pole

What is going on at the North Pole? Several elves in the toy making department have reported congestion, cough and shortness of breath. While it is cold and flu season, all of the elves have had their flu shots and the issues seem to be contained to the elves working in the toy shop. A handful of elves also report sore throats, burning eyes and fatigue. This is highly unusual. Santa and the elves cannot recall a similar situation in all of their years. In trying to identify a culprit, they remembered a summertime renovation of the toy shop and a

Thinking about time-series……and mobile phones - do, 12/13/2018 - 18:51

I recently published a paper with the exciting title ‘Analyses of temporal and spatial patterns of glioblastoma multiforme and other brain cancer subtypes in relation to mobile phones using synthetic counterfactuals’ in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Research. At the time of writing this is still available as open access here [link], but because this research did not receive additional funding from anywhere it will be placed behind a paywall soon [update 12/12/2018: it seems the journal has gone open access, so there may be a chance this remains available to everyone]. This work continued from previous work on the likelihood of mobile phone use as a risk factor for brain cancer published earlier here as open access [link], but looked specifically at trends in (1) an aggressive form of brain cancer, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), in different brain regions and (2) different cancer subtypes, including GBM, in one particular region in the brain; the temporal lobe.

Both papers were picked up by Microwave News, and in both cases I was asked to provide further background and comment on this. Also in both cases, I felt that what was eventually put on that website did not reflect the (quite extensive) explanations and comments I had made. I cannot force people to put stuff on their website, so there is not much I could do to balance that information better, but I do have my own website; you are looking at it as we speak. So, although my intention has always been to not use The FunPolice as a vehicle for my own work, I am making an exception now to provide a bit more background (and some interesting additional analyses) to that paper.

Link to the full story at The Fun Police

Health for the Holidays: Risks and Recommendations for the Retail Industry

It’s finally here—the most wonderful time of the year… for shopping. People will visit retail stores to buy a variety of goods: the cleaning supplies they will use to prepare for holiday celebrations, the food and beverages they will serve at holiday gatherings, the holiday gifts they will give loved ones, and much more. Economic projections suggest retailers should brace themselves for a heavy amount of seasonal shopping traffic this year. According to an October 2018 Gallup poll, 87% of Americans plan to shop and spend money on the 2018 holidays [Saad 2018]. The National Retail Federation (NRF) estimates retail

Improving Programs to Control Hazardous Energy: New website offers tools and templates

A new website from the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA) Manufacturing Sector Council features ways in which businesses and companies can safeguard employees from the release of hazardous energy (any source of electrical, mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic, chemical, thermal, or other energy) during service and maintenance activities. The new website features a resource guide with step-by-step guidance and customizable materials and templates to help implement effective strategies for controlling the release of unsafe hazardous energy. This website is a collaborative effort from the NORA Manufacturing Sector Council members. The resources were organized for key components of a program, and include: –

A Mini-Symposium on Cumulative Risk Assessment in the Occupational Setting

Many of us in the occupational safety and health field have likely faced an issue similar to this: The workers in my plant are exposed to both noise and solvents. I’ve read that both of these exposures can interact to cause hearing loss. How should I control these exposures to reduce the risk of occupational hearing loss? If I control each of the exposures to their relevant occupational exposure limits, is that good enough? Or should I control these exposures to levels below their occupational exposure limits? If so, by how much? Identifying and evaluating the combined effects of multiple

The 2018 Summer Occupational Health Internship Program (OHIP)

The 2018 Occupational Health Internship Program (OHIP) summer marked the program’s 15th year of placing students in the field with a worker or community based organization on projects that investigate work-related health and safety issues. This summer, 22 OHIP interns worked on 12 occupational health and safety projects in eight locations. At the start of the OHIP summer, the interns met in Los Angeles for a three-day national orientation, where they visited worksites to identify hazards and safeguards, listened to a panel of workers who sustained injuries or encountered hazards on the job, heard from alumni about their OHIP experiences,