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Healthy Vision Month

Categories: Observances, Personal Protective Equipment


visionNIOSH is excited to partner with the National Institutes of Health’s National Eye Institute (NEI) to help promote Healthy Vision Month! Every May, the NEI empowers Americans to make their eye health a priority and educates them about steps they can take to protect their vision. For more on NEI’s Healthy Vision Month campaign, visit their website.

Safe and healthy vision is an important topic for just about everyone, but has particular significance in the context of work. The workplace and the type of work we do have a critical influence on eye safety and overall health. While workers have a vested interest in safeguarding their eyes, employers have a legal and ethical responsibility to keep workers safe from hazards, including those that may impact vision. Every day, about 2,000 US workers receive medical treatment because of eye injuries sustained at work. The most common causes of these injuries include: small particles or objects striking the eye, blunt force trauma, chemical burns, and thermal burns. Some workers are at an additional risk of exposure to infectious disease transmissible through the mucous membranes of the eye as a result of exposure to droplets of blood and other body fluids or other contact. Poorly organized, designed or maintained workplaces can also put workers at risk of eye injury. Inadequate lighting that impacts sight and poor or declining vision can also contribute to many types of work-related injuries, including traffic incidents and slips, trips, or falls.

Standing–Down to Prevent Falls in Construction

Categories: Construction, Falls, Uncategorized

stand-down 2016We know falls in the workplace are preventable and yet falls remain the leading cause of death in construction. As part of the effort to prevent falls in construction, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), is again partnering with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and CPWR—The Center for Construction Research and Training, among other partners, in the National Safety Stand-Down to be held May 2-6, 2016. The Safety Stand-Down is a voluntary event for employers to talk directly to employees about fall hazards and to reinforce the importance of fall prevention requirements.

Are Hospital Cleaning Staff at Risk When Using a One-step Cleaner?

Categories: Healthcare, Respiratory Health


Workers’ health and safety is an important consideration when choosing cleaning and disinfectant products. In health care settings, disinfection products help minimize healthcare-acquired infections.  In January 2015, the National Institute for Occupational Health (NIOSH), received a request to conduct a health hazard evaluation at a Pennsylvania hospital using a new surface cleaning product consisting of hydrogen peroxide (HP), peroxyacetic acid (PAA), and acetic acid (AA).  The request cited concerns about exposure of hospital environmental services staff to the cleaning product and reported symptoms including burning eyes, nose, and throat; cough; headache; asthma exacerbations; and skin burns.  A summary of the NIOSH evaluation was recently published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Workers Memorial Day Message 2016

Categories: Aging Workers, Drugs, Falls, Motor Vehicle Safety, Observances, Oil and Gas


WorkerMemorialDayEach year we pause on April 28 for Workers Memorial Day to publicly remember the workers who died or suffered from exposures to hazards at work. While worker deaths in America are down, on average, even one death or one injury is still too many.

To prevent injury, illness, and death in today’s workplaces, we must recognize new threats that emerge from changes in the world around us.  Exotic infectious diseases that once were rare and remote now cross national borders with the speed of a passenger jet.  NIOSH and its partners served on the front lines last year, literally and figuratively, to develop and apply guidance for reducing work-related risks from Ebola in a range of occupations from health care providers to mortuary workers, airline workers, and business travelers.  This year, our partners and we are directing similar attention to worker issues as part of the nation’s preparedness efforts for the Zika virus.

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