Latex gloves are back on the public agenda. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued a proposed warning label for powdered gloves and is considering a ban on the use of powder in latex gloves and alternatives, even as hospitals greatly reduce their use of powdered gloves.
The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) has taken a strong position in favor of the Occupational Safety & Health Administration's proposed federal Illness and Injury Prevention Programs (I2P2) standard, including strengthening the requirements in certain ways beyond what California OSHA already requires, says Paul Papanek, MD, MPH, chairman of the board for the San Francisco, CA-based Western Occupational Environmental Medical Association.
As an employee, wouldn't you like the chance to anonymously report what you really think of occupational health programs? This is one way Sandra Cinque, RN, BA, COHN-S/CM, FAAOHN, nurse clinical coordinator for health, safety & performance services at GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare in Parsippany, NJ, promotes participation in the company's Health Risk Questionnaires (HRQs).
Social media is opening up new avenues for delivering health and safety information. Employee health professionals can download training videos from YouTube, track occupational health news or research on a blog or Twitter, and even communicate with their own employees through social networking sites.
It may seem like a "no-brainer" to you, but it's not always enough to simply ask workers to make changes for better health. You may need to offer other incentives to get them to take action, says Margie Weiss, PhD, CEO and community health advocate at the Weiss Health Group, a Neenah, WI-based consulting company that works with companies and communities on health and wellness.
You may be pressured to return an injured employee to work as soon as possible by management, human resources, or supervisors. However, returning someone to work too soon can put the employee, the company, and yourself at risk, warns Mary D.C. Garison, RN, COHN-S, CCM, COHC, FAAOHN, an Angleton, TX-based occupational health nurse.