Occupational Health, Recognizing and Preventing Work-Related Disease, Second Edition, Levy BS, Wegman DH, eds., Boston, MA: Little, Brown and Company, 1988; :75-86
The search for previously unrecognized diseases or physiologic conditions that are caused by or influenced by worker associated factors was discussed. Five criteria must be met for screening programs for occupational disease to be effective. Screening must be selective. The disease must be identified in its latent stage as opposed to when symptoms appear and screening must result in treatment that impedes the progression of the disease. Screening, to be effective, must promote adequate follow up with further diagnostic testing and effective management of the disease. The screening tests used must have good reliability and validity. The benefits of the screening program should outweigh the cost of using it. Screening approaches currently used for five major categories of work related disease were reviewed. These categories included nonmalignant respiratory disease, hearing impairment, toxic effects, cancer and back problems. Few of these currently used programs met all five of the mentioned criteria. Possibilities were discussed for improved screening. Selected OSHA standards were listed for medical surveillance of workers exposed to airborne asbestos (1332214), vinyl-chloride (75014S), inorganic arsenic (7440382), benzene (71432), and dibromochloropropane (96128).
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