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Occupational health is a branch of medicine that comprises the prevention of work-related diseases, safe working practices, ergonomics, promotion, and preservation of physical, emotional and social well-being of workers in all occupations.
Usually, health professionals work as occupational health workers. The occupational health professional aims to determine the impact of the work on the employee and assess the eligibility of the employee to a particular job. They also carry the responsibility of assessing and preventing work-related risk factors and diseases.
Occupational health problems
Occupational health problems may affect the employee due to various reasons. Common occupational health hazards include any injury such as cuts, fractures or sprains, strains, amputations, repetitive motion disorders, hearing problems due to excessive noise exposure, blindness or any vision problems, illness due to inhalation, touching or ingesting noxious substances, exposure to radiation and any exposure to microorganisms in healthcare settings.
Occupational health service
Occupational health services are responsible for establishing and maintaining a secure, healthy, hazard-free work environment to facilitate the optimal physical and mental health of the employees in relation to the work and adaptation of the work practice. The services of occupational health include:
- Identifying and assessing the associated risk factors causing health problems in the workplace; This process involves inspection of factors in the working environment and the type of work affecting the health of employees. It requires a systemic analysis of occupational accidents and diseases.
- Investigations of worker's health in relation to their work
- Guiding the organisation to plan the work practices including the conception of a safe work environment, evaluation or maintenance of equipment or other substances required in the occupation and helping the worker to adapt to the work
- Provide occupational rehabilitation to employees of working age and assist the unemployed due to illness or disability to return to their employment
- Organisation of first aid and emergency treatments for employees
- Provide knowledge, training, and education on occupational health, hygiene, and safety including instruction on ergonomics and use of protective equipment