Occupational Hygiene

Hygiene in the Work Place

Hygiene in the work place is of extremely high importance. It is the clutter and litter that causes injury and impairment and impacts negatively on the employees’ psychology and work attitude. The ramifications of a subdued work attitude have a direct effect on the output. As a result behavioral scientists have developed concepts and plans of action dedicated to the creation of a hospitable work environment. These efforts, however, are bound to be in vain if an acceptable level of hygiene is not maintained, necessitating the development of a new science: occupational hygiene. The International Occupational hygiene Association and the British Occupational Hygiene Society are two of the organizations dedicated towards the advancement of the art and science of industrial hygiene.

Art and science

Industrial hygiene is the art and science of recognizing and anticipating factors that may pose a hindrance to the health of the worker with a view to protecting worker wellbeing, as well as safeguarding the community at large. Industrial hygiene consultants are certified by the relevant bodies and are well versed in the means to provide the best possible solutions to the hygiene problems in an industry. They work in a myriad of sectors, ranging from the aerospace to the energy sector, and are involved in multifarious tasks and assignments, ranging from industrial hygiene risk assessment to the measurement of air quality. The typical roles of an industrial hygiene professional include the following:

1) Carrying out an industrial hygiene risk assessment

This involves an investigation to determine workplace risks and hazards as well as making recommendations as to the general means of controlling these factors.

2) Training and educating the community about occupational risks

Carrying out research to develop techniques of anticipating and controlling industrial hygiene risks and hazards.

3) Advising on an industrial waste control policy.

4) Ensuring adherence to an occupational hygiene risk policy developed especially for the particular organization.

Industrial hygiene companies employ a wide selection of professionals including toxicologists and chemists who work in all sectors with a view to advancing occupational hygiene. Services such as mold control and air quality as well as industrial clean-up are part of the portfolio of any hygiene company worth its salt. They may also be engaged as expert witnesses in the event of litigation skewed towards industrial waste disposal and accidents.

The concept of hygiene should not be lost in any workplace. A clean desk, clean floor, and clean air policy should be extended to all workplaces with a view to sustaining a good working environment. This will have a profound positive effect on output. As such, managerial efforts should be channeled towards the creation and promotion of a reasonable and workable industrial hygiene policy. As a result, a reputable industrial hygiene company should be contracted and engaged with the advisory part of the industrial hygiene control process. The recommendations, however, should trickle down to every employee, with each attempting to make the work environment as clean as possible for themselves as well as the community.