We explain what occupational health is and what its objectives are. What specific functions it has and what are its causes.
What is occupational health?
Occupational health, according to the World Health Organization ( WHO ), is defined as a multidisciplinary activity that controls and carries out prevention measures to take care of the health of all workers . This includes illnesses, any type of accidents and all the factors that could endanger the life , health or safety of people in their respective jobs.
Decades ago, we began to discuss the importance of the health of workers who expose their bodies in a risky way when carrying out their work. It is for this reason that occupational health was created in order to promote and maintain as much as possible the physical and mental well-being of people who have a job.
Occupational health, in its origins, was invented in order to help and protect those who had more physical risks when they worked, but nowadays, it includes workers of any profession or trade so that the work adapts to man, and The man at work.
Objectives of occupational health
As the main objective , occupational health generates and promotes that work is healthy and safe . For this, it protects workers from the possibility that there is a risk in the work environment for their health or well-being.
In turn, it is related to analyze the environment and adapt it to the physical and psychological conditions of the workers. It is for this reason that three main objectives of occupational health were established.
In the first place, the health of the employees must be maintained and promoted, as well as the capacity of each one. Working conditions must be optimal enough to promote their health and well-being.
Finally, emphasis will be placed on creating organizational systems to promote health and safety in the workplace . A positive climate must be promoted in the organization , it will seek to achieve greater efficiency and thus be able to optimize the productivity of each company.
Occupational Health Functions
Although each country will have its own regulations regarding occupational health, there are certain functions that are general and fundamental.
- You must identify and evaluate any type of risk that could affect the workplace.
- You should analyze the factors that concern the work environment and analyze whether any practice that is carried out there can harm the health or welfare of workers .
- It will provide advice regarding health, safety and hygiene, and ergonomics.
- It will be responsible for disseminating the necessary information and educating workers about health and hygiene.
- It will ensure that regulations related to the quality and hygiene of the place are guaranteed .
Causes of occupational health
The problems that occupational health deals with are linked to everything that happens in the workplace or as a result of the work they do.
Some examples of these accidents can be: fractures, cuts, amputations, any type of disorders caused by repetitive movement , problems that may arise in the ears due to some particular noise that exists in the workplace, vision problems -Even blindness-, any disease caused by difficulty breathing , caused by radiation exposure or by exposures to germs that are in places where there should be health care.
It is essential that a workplace with the necessary conditions to provide health and safety to all workers can be provided. The prevention of future illnesses or accidents must be carried out in order to reduce the risks of these problems occurring.
In turn, all workers must take care of their own health and well-being on their own ; that is, if their work requires using the body in a risky way, they must be kept in good physical and healthy condition. It is always advisable to do everything possible to reduce the level of stress that job obligations can cause.
Finally, each person must confirm that their work area maintains adequate working conditions and should always use the appropriate clothing and equipment.