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An Ergonomics Program to Control Work-Related Cumulative Trauma Disorders of the Upper Extremities.

McGlothlin JD
Dissertation, University of Michigan, 1988:134 pages
A program was established in a hand intensive manufacturing facility to control upper extremity cumulative trauma disorders (CTDs). The plan consisted of four distinct components: job analysis; education and training of management and workers in the principles of ergonomics and identification of risk factors; development of a task force; and implementation of a health surveillance system. The control approach indicated that facility designed tools were the most successfully implemented attribute, followed by changes in work practices to reduce work stresses. The original program stressed administrative controls including worker rotation, job enlargement and market available tools, while the plan for new jobs stressed engineering controls such as work station design, gravity feed racks, and facility designed tools. The shift from administrative to engineering controls may be attributed to application of ergonomic principles by facility engineers during the design of new workstations, flexibility in production quotas during the work startup phase, and financial resources for ergonomic enhancements to new work stations after startup. The author concludes that the best time to implement ergonomic suggestions is during work station design and start up; that the success of retrofitting existing work stations by ergonomic design depends on the support of management and labor at all levels; and that any long term effectiveness of the Task Force is a direct function of key management and labor support.
NIOSH-Author; Repetitive-work; Hand-injuries; Arm-injuries; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Workplace-studies; Cumulative-trauma-disorders; Equipment-design; Industrial-design;
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Musculoskeletal Disorders of the Upper Extremities; Disease and Injury; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders;
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Dissertation, University of Michigan, 134 pages, 41 references
Page last reviewed: September 11, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division