Site visits. Part I. Worksite evaluations.
Jennison EA; Kullman GJ; Parker JE
Occupational and environmental respiratory disease. Harber P, Schenker MB, Balmes JR, eds. St. Louis, MO: Mosby, 1995 Jul; :141-147
Methods for doing worksite evaluations conducted by consultants who survey worksites in response to occupational health and safety concerns were described. Worksite evaluations included review of existing records, medical testing, environmental measurements, walk through evaluation, in depth evaluation, or followup. Consultants reviewed the literature about known health effects of any materials under suspicion. During the walk through evaluation, consultants became familiar with the worksite, its operations, processes, and potential for occupational safety problems. The walk through followed the flow of raw materials into the factory to the point where the finished product left the facility. If the investigation was prompted by worker health complaints, consultants noted whether inciting events were reported on the OSHA log 200. Interviews with employees were confidential, informal and open ended. Findings of the walk through dictated whether an in depth evaluation was needed. If deemed necessary, appropriate screening tests or questionnaires were selected. All individuals who were tested received confidential results of their medical tests. A well written report completed the worksite investigation, starting with a description of why the evaluation was performed, followed by a description of the methods used. Limitations of worksite evaluations by consultants were related to their cross sectional nature. First, cross sectional studies cannot determine whether exposure preceded a disease or is spuriously associated. Second, cross sectional studies measure disease prevalence rather than incidence. The authors conclude that a well planned and executed worksite evaluation contributes to the occupational health and safety of the affected workers.
Workplace-monitoring; Workplace-studies; Surveillance-programs; Health-surveys; Occupational-exposure; Occupational-safety-programs; Occupational-health
Harber P; Schenker MB; Balmes JR
Occupational and environmental respiratory disease