Occupational Health Experts Recommend a New Plan of Safety to Prevent Workplace Injury and Illness
A guide is created providing examples of leading health metrics in the workplace.
- By Shereen Hashem
- May 14, 2021
The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and the association for scientists and professionals announced new guidelines for developing health metrics in the workplace. According to a press release, the leading health metrics guidelines are designed to prevent workplace illness and injury for workers to remain completely healthy.
“The focus on identifying measures that occur before worker’s health is harmed is critical to safeguarding worker health. AIHA hopes that these guidelines help employers create healthier workplaces and prevent occupational illness and injury in the first place,” said AIHA CEO Lawrence D. Sloan, CAE.
The Best Practice Guide for Leading Health Metrics in Occupational Health and Safety is a guide for both practitioners and managers in the broad occupational health community, i.e., industrial hygiene, occupational medicine/health nursing, engineering and human resources. This applies to all business sizes and industries, examples include: manufacturing, distribution and healthcare.
Leading health metrics, as opposed to lagging health metrics, focus on disease prevention as well as health promotion. According to the press release, they are “measurable, evidence-based indicators that are used to monitor, predict, influence and manage exposures, hazards and conditions in a workplace that may impact worker health.” Health outcomes addressed by leading metrics can be acute, such as eye irritation, or chronic, such as elevated blood pressure.
Lagging health metrics measure occurrences that happened after-the-fact, including: illness rates, injury and prevalence of a disease. Lagging metrics are not preventative, since the worker has already been impacted.
Shereen Hashem is the Associate Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety magazine.