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Selected Category: Emergency Response/Public Sector

National Safety Month

Categories: Drugs, Emergency Response/Public Sector, Motor Vehicle Safety, Observances, Total Worker Health

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It’s National Safety Month. Each June, the National Safety Council and its partners raise awareness on preventing the leading causes of injury and death at work, on the roads and in our homes and communities.  This year’s theme is SafeForLife. Each week of June has a different focus area. In this joint blog from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the National Safety Council, we will highlight research and prevention activities in the four focus areas. Help us spread the word about National Safety Month.  Downloadable materials highlighting each of the four safety topics are available on the NSC website. Share them widely to help others identify risks and stay safe – for a lifetime.

One Size Does Not Fit All

Categories: Emergency Response/Public Sector, Personal Protective Equipment, Transportation

 

When your safety and your life depends on it, you need your equipment to fit properly. This is especially true in the workplace. Improper fit may prevent workers from performing their job duties safely and effectively. If your respirator does not seal properly to your face, if your gloves are too big, if your seatbelt cannot buckle with your safety gear on . . . you get the picture.

Anthropometry is the science of defining human body dimensions and physical characteristics. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) conducts anthropometric research to prevent work-related injuries and deaths by studying how work spaces and equipment fit today’s diverse worker population. This includes the fit of machines, vehicles, and personal protective equipment (PPE). Much of the available data were collected in the 1950s and 1970s from military personnel and the general population from that era. These decades-old data do not represent, on average and collectively, the sizes and body types of today’s workers, who are much more diverse in age, gender, and ethnicity. NIOSH research has shown workers have unique shapes and sizes for specific occupations.

Health Effects from 9/11: Lessons Learned

Categories: Emergency Response/Public Sector, Observances, World Trade Center Health Program

 

Today, as the world remembers the terrorist attacks of 9/11 we must also remember that tens of thousands of responders and survivors of the disaster continue to suffer adverse health effects every day. Multiple types of toxic exposures were encountered by the responders, clean-up personnel and residents of the surrounding community. A new Continuing Medical Education (CME/CE) activity from the World Trade Center (WTC) Health Program with the assistance of Medscape-WebMD provides a better understanding of the important lessons learned from the 9/11 disaster (see video announcement from Dr. John Howard below).

NIOSH Research Highlights Importance of Rigorous Standards for Gowns Used to Protect Healthcare Workers

Categories: Bloodborne pathogens, Emergency Response/Public Sector, Healthcare, Personal Protective Equipment

 

Recent research performed at the NIOSH National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL), with support from Nelson Laboratories, suggests that some isolation gowns do not meet the performance standards established by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI)/Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI).

Isolation gowns are the second-most-used piece of personal protective equipment (PPE) in hospitals, following gloves (Holguin, 2011). Hospital isolation gowns are worn to protect healthcare workers during procedures and patient-care activities when anticipating contact with blood, bodily fluids, secretions and excretions (Siegel, 2007). The threat of emerging infectious diseases, such as Ebola virus disease and pandemic influenza, has highlighted the need for effective PPE to protect both healthcare workers and their patients.

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