Practical aspects of radiation safety for using fluorine-18.
The use of positron-emitting nuclides is becoming routine in nuclear medicine departments today. Introducing these nuclides into the nuclear medicine department can be a smooth transition by instituting educational lectures, radiation safety protocols and patient education. The radiation safety concerns of the technical staff, physicians and ancillary personnel are important and must be addressed. Nuclear medicine departments can be optimistic about implementing PET imaging while staying well within ALARA guidelines. After reading this article, the technologist should be able to: (a) describe at least three ways to reduce the radiation dose to the technologist during the performance of PET imaging procedures with 18F; (b) discuss the relationships between gamma-ray energy, the amount of activity administered to a patient, exposure time and occupational dose; and (c) describe one strategy to minimize the radiation dose to the bladder in patients who have received 18F. (+info)
Reduction of unsafe eating in a patient with esophageal stricture.
Previous research has demonstrated the efficacy of behavioral interventions in teaching self-feeding skills as well as in reducing inappropriate self-feeding behavior. The purpose of this study was to extend previous research on the use of prompting and reinforcement in reducing unsafe eating behaviors to the treatment of an adolescent with developmental disabilities and esophageal stricture. A behavioral assessment and treatment using prompting and reinforcement were shown to be effective in decreasing bite rate, decreasing bite size, and increasing the number of chews per bite. (+info)
Is occupational dermatitis being taken seriously by UK industries?
Occupational dermatitis is a considerable burden but little is documented concerning industry response to this. A postal questionnaire survey of 1,100 UK companies was conducted to investigate skin care provision. The response rate was 51%. The person primarily responsible for health and safety had a professional qualification in only 34% of responding companies. In all, 75% of companies responded that they were required to conduct COSHH risk assessments and, of these, 71% mentioned skin hazards. Only 27% of companies had a skin care policy but 71% had procedures requiring glove use. Seventy-seven per cent of companies did not conduct regular skin checks. Twenty-six per cent had either been aware of a skin problem in the workforce in the last 12 months or had had to modify work practices. Improvement of skin care in UK industry could be facilitated by the establishment of a minimum recommended training qualification; assistance with compliance with COSHH legislation; and guidelines to design and implement a skin policy, provide worker protection and detect skin problems. (+info)
Workers' right-to-know legislation: does it work?
Workers' right-to-know (WRTK) laws and regulations were established to empower workers to protect their health by providing them with information about the hazards to which they are exposed while at work. The present study was conducted to examine the implementation of WRTK regulations in Israel. We interviewed 552 workers and 33 safety officers from a random sample employed at 50 industrial plants. The workers' questionnaire included items on awareness and self-management of workplace hazards, and the safety officers answered questions about job experience and hazards communications to workers. In 36% of cases workers and their safety officers disagreed about the existence of hazards in the workplace (p < 0.001). Most (78%) of the workers' knowledge about work hazards was based on informal sources, i.e., not those stipulated by the regulations. There were also discrepancies between worker and safety officer reports regarding the provision of safety training upon employment (p < 0.001), recent instructions about special risks and distribution of relevant printed material. We found that more than 5% of workers were unable to read the language in which the hazards material was written and 22% had levels of education below that required to comprehend the technical terms used. There are serious problems in the implementation of WRTK regulations in Israel. We recommend that employers be made aware of the importance of these laws and of their proactive duty to comply with them and that the material distributed to workers be written in simpler terms and/or explained orally in a language they understand. These findings have important implications for all countries with similar legislation and should form the basis for further and more comprehensive studies world-wide. (+info)
Health and safety practices among farmers and other workers: a needs assessment.
The development of appropriate health and safety interventions for farmers and agri-workers is important world-wide but data on present practices and attitudes to change are lacking. A representative quota sample (n = 1,938) of the Irish population was surveyed on lifestyle practices and workplace risk assessment and control measures, in relation to chemical exposure, manual handling and machinery. Focus group discussions were conducted also with 47 representatives of national farming organizations. As compared with the general workforce, farmers had a significantly (p < 0.01) lower level of assessment of risk hazards associated with manual handling and machinery. Both farmers and employees in workplaces with less than 20 employees reported a significantly lower level of safety training. Male farmers had a particularly negative health profile with only 18% reporting regular dental checks, 26% practising skin protection and 29% taking regular exercise. Discussions indicated that barriers to change included low perceived susceptibility, lack of time and resources. Mental health issues were particularly highlighted. We conclude farmers differ significantly in many instances from the rest of the workforce in regard to occupational health and safety issues and specific interventions in key areas are required for the agri-sector. (+info)
The spectrum of prevention: developing a comprehensive approach to injury prevention.
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this paper is to describe the "spectrum of prevention", a framework for developing multifaceted approaches to injury prevention. The value of the tool is that it can help practitioners develop and structure comprehensive initiatives. METHODS: The spectrum is comprised of six inter-related action levels: (1) strengthening individual knowledge and skills, (2) promoting community education, (3) educating providers, (4) fostering coalitions and networks, (5) changing organizational practices, and (6) influencing policy and legislation. Activities at each of these levels have the potential to support each other and promote overall community health and safety. CONCLUSIONS: The spectrum of prevention is a tool which can help practitioners and policy leaders move beyond a primarily educational approach to achieve broad community goals through injury prevention strategies that include policy development. This framework has been endorsed and applied in a variety of disciplines, however it has not been formally evaluated, a process that could clarify the scope of its effectiveness. (+info)
Preventing commercial fishing deaths in Alaska.
OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effectiveness of the United States Commercial Fishing Industry Vessel Safety Act of 1988 in reducing the high occupational death rate (200/100,000/year in 1991-2) among Alaska's commercial fishermen. METHODS: Comprehensive surveillance of deaths in commercial fishing was established by our office during 1991 and 1992 for Alaska. Demographic data and data on risk factors and incidents were compiled and analysed for trend. RESULTS: During 1991-8, there was a significant (p < 0.001) decrease in deaths in Alaska related to commercial fishing. Although drownings from fishermen falling overboard and events related to crab fishing vessels (often conducted far offshore and in winter) have continued to occur, marked progress (significant downward trend, p < 0.001) has been made in saving the lives of people involved in vessels capsizing and sinking. CONCLUSIONS: Specific measures tailored to prevent drowning associated with vessels capsizing and sinking in Alaska's commercial fishing industry have been successful. However, these events continue to occur, and place fishermen and rescue personnel at substantial risk. Additional strategies must be identified to reduce the frequency of vessels capsizing and sinking, to enable parallel improvements in the mortality among crab fishermen, and to prevent fishermen falling overboard and drownings associated with them. (+info)
Auditing health and safety management systems: a regulator's view.
HSE's publication 'Successful Health and Safety Management' (HSG65) describes key elements of successful health and safety management systems. A three level model is explained and one of the elements, auditing, is explored in detail by the regulator. The term auditing in the health and safety context is defined and the use of proprietary and in-house systems compared. The process of auditing is described and the regulator concludes by encouraging organizations to use auditing schemes, without endorsing any particular one, as they can be a powerful tool for checking the adequacy of health and safety management systems. (+info)