Pneumoconiosis is one of the leading occupational health problems in various industries, coming in different forms like coal worker’s pneumoconiosis and silicosis. This makes it important for certain companies to keep proper occupational health care, like coal dust and silica risk assessment, for their workers’ welfare.
After all, legislation in various places, like in NSW, includes specific clauses under occupational health for companies to follow.
Why is Workplace Health Assessment important against pneumoconiosis?
Pneumoconiosis is a type of occupational lung disease caused by different dust particles, which could be lodged in the lung mucus blanket upon inhalation. Different dust particle causes a different specific type of pneumoconiosis, such as coal to coal worker’s pneumoconiosis and silica to silicosis.
Effects of pneumoconiosis
Pneumoconiosis may go unnoticed for a considerable amount of time, with some types going up to more than 10 years before showing symptoms. During its early stages, only proper medical management and health check-ups can possibly detect it in a person.
Some symptoms commonly include lung irritation, breathing difficulty, the formation of patches in the lungs, and some other visible indicators like discolouration of the skin. Moreover, pneumoconiosis can also cause death when left untreated.
Proper Workplace Assessment to deal with Pneumoconiosis
Pneumoconiosis is a very common occupational health threat across various industries. The problem with it is the length of time before symptoms show on an affected worker, and the fact of it being incurable.
This makes occupational assessments very important, like coal dust and silica risk assessment, to detect pneumoconiosis on the earliest time possible.
As a solution to this, various legislations mandates companies to conduct regular occupational health surveillance to each of their workers. Like Order 43, for example, it mandates chest X-Ray to each coal mining workers every three years and requires pre-employment and exit assessments too.
Prevention of Pneumoconiosis
The injury classification of Pneumoconiosis belongs to incurable lung diseases and is one of the most common occupational injuries. Although doctors could stop the growth of pneumoconiosis when diagnosed, the company management still holds the main preventive measures against it.
Dust protective gears and equipment
Aside from proper occupational health assessment, it’s important for companies to provide sufficient protection for their workers too. Such protection could include respirators, proper face masks, gloves, and dust containment systems among other equipment.
Encouragement of proper hygiene among workers
Company management should also encourage their workers about proper workplace hygiene. For example, they should bring extra clothes to wear before going home, so that dust particles wouldn’t spread outside the workplace.
Of course, washing of hands before cooking, eating, touching facial areas, and some other activities is a very important necessity as well. It would be best for workers to bring disinfectants, like hand sanitizers, which they could use every now and then.
Availing reliable occupational health care services
Finally, it’s important for companies to look for reliable occupational health care services, for their workers to receive proper assessments. This includes standard silica risk assessment, as stated by legislation.
Pneumoconiosis is a big threat to various industries worldwide. Thus, companies must make some move to protect their workers, like hiring occupational doctors from Resile.com.au.