Respond to the FOHN survey!
The Faculty of Occupational Health Nursing (FOHN) Development Group is carrying out a nationwide survey of OH nurses. It has three objectives: to find out what OH nurses want and expect from a future FOHN; to establish what they think about OH nurse education; and to better understand the demographic characteristics of nurses working in the OH setting. Nurses and student nurses working in OH are encouraged to complete the 15-minute survey, which closes on 31 May 2016. Results will be reported on the FOHN website and in the At Work Partnership journal Occupational Health [at Work].
Healthy workplaces across Europe
An EU-wide Healthy Workplaces for All Ages campaign has been launched by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work. It is claimed to be the world’s largest campaign to promote sustainable work and workplace safety and health in the context of an ageing workforce. Funded by the European Commission the campaign already has more than 50 official campaign partners. It runs until November 2017 and incorporates the next two European Weeks for Safety and Health at Work (in October 2016 and 2017).
Occupational Zika guidance
Interim guidance on the occupational risks of the Zika virus has been published by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (1). The CDC’s Zika website gives updated advice on areas with active mosquito-born transmission (2), while its travel health website provides guidance for travellers and healthcare providers (3).
Guidance for GPs and other healthcare professionals on the facts around the prostate specific antigen (PSA) test for prostate cancer has been issued by Public Health England. It is designed to help healthcare professionals give clear and balanced guidance to asymptomatic men on the potential benefits and risks of having the test. The PSA test is not accurate enough to serve as the basis of a national screening programme but is available free on the NHS to any well man over 50 who requests it.
Guidance on PSA testing for well men aged over 50 is also available at:
Research from the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health shows that older drivers are more likely than their younger counterparts to adopt safe behaviours, such as wearing a seat belt and complying with speed limits. However, those aged 55 and older have twice the risk of dying in a work-related crash than younger workers do – possibly because older people are more likely to be injured if they are in a crash, and more likely to die if they are injured. A fact sheet gives employers and workers information on age-related physical and mental changes that may affect older workers’ driving.
Cases of long-term sickness absence for psychological reasons among police officers and staff in the UK have risen by 35% over the past five year, figures obtained by the BBC reveal. The statistics were obtained following a freedom-of-information request made by BBC Radio 5. Long-term absence cases recorded as being due to psychological reasons rose from 4,544 in 2010–11 to 6,129 in 2014–15, despite the total number of officers and staff falling, says the BBC. The number of staff or officers off sick for more than 28 or 29 days also rose, from 19,825 cases in 2010–11 to 22,547 in 2014–15.
NICE project on reducing sickness absence
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence is working on new workplace guidance on improving employee mental and physical health and wellbeing, and lowering sickness absence. Publication is expected in January 2017.
£200,000 Paraquat prosecution
Agrochemical company Syngenta Ltd has been fined £200,000, with £13,041 costs, for breaching health and safety legislation when about 3.5 tonnes of the highly toxic weedkiller paraquat was ejected under pressure from a tanker at the company’s Huddersfield plant in December 2014. A company maintenance engineer had unintentionally opened a tanker valve. It took half an hour before staff could safely enter the area to shut it down.
The latest Research Plus is available free of charge on our website
Research Plus, funded by a grant from the British Occupational Health Research Foundation
, is freely available to all OH professionals. It is published as part of the Occupational Health [at Work]
journal. It highlights original research and systematic reviews from a wide range of current publications meeting evidence quality criteria.
Please visit http://www.atworkpartnership.co.uk/researchplus
to search all of the articles in Research Plus free of charge from 2007 to the present day.
The April/May 2016 issue looked at some of the latest research in the following areas: