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The role of the occupational physician in controlling industrial toxins outside the working environment.
Occupational safety and health symposia 1977. Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DHEW (NIOSH) Publication No. 78-169, 1978 Jun; :279-283
The role of the occupational physician in the identification and control of industrial toxic chemicals outside the work place was presented. Topics included the disparity of exposures between the working population inside the facility and the general population outside the facility using cases of angiosarcoma of the liver attributable to vinyl-chloride (75014) exposure as an example. Hazardous levels of vinyl-chloride ranging to 17 parts per billion resulted in an excess risk of liver angiosarcoma in workers without comparable risk in the surrounding community. Efforts by the EPA to lower permissible community vinyl-chloride levels from 19 to 2 parts per billion were described, including an attempt by the Environmental Defense Fund to force a further reduction of community vinyl-chloride levels. Suggested roles for the occupational physician in the area of community health standards included determination of whether or not a threat to community health exists, establishing dose/response relationships, and the selection of suitable community levels for toxic agents. Reasons why occupational physicians have not been more active in environmental and community affairs were discussed.
Toxic-materials; Regulations; Environmental-protection; Environmental-pollution; Air-contamination; Industrial-emissions; Carcinogens; Environmental-exposure
Occupational safety and health symposia 1977
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division