|Title:||Occupational health examination of asbestos-exposed workers: Viewpoints of occupational health physicians||Authors:||Hsiao, Fan Ju
Chen, Chung Yen
Lee, Lukas Jyuhn Hsiarn
|Keywords:||Asbestos | Occupational diseases | Occupational health examination | Occupational health physicians||Issue Date:||1-Feb-2018||Journal Volume:||37||Journal Issue:||1||Start page/Pages:||24-33||Source:||Taiwan Journal of Public Health||Abstract:||
© 2018 Chinese Public Health Association of Taiwan. All rights reserved. Objectives: One of the many shortcomings of the current occupational health examination (OHE) system in Taiwan is that only on-the-job workers are eligible to participate, making it difficult for the early detection of workers who develop occupational diseases with long disease latencies. We used occupational asbestos-related diseases (OARDs) as an example to explore the opinions of occupational health physicians (OHPs), who play important roles in the OHE system, regarding the necessity, feasibility, and potential impact of post-exposure OHEs involving asbestos-exposed workers. Methods: Fifteen OHPs were interviewed individually during the period from January to August 2017, with questions on the following two themes: (1) opinions about the current OHE system for asbestos-exposed workers; and (2) opinions on the establishment of post-exposure OHEs for asbestos-exposed workers. Results: All of the interviewees agreed that the current OHE system fails to detect OARDs, thus reforms are needed; however, the interviewees had concerns regarding the establishment of a post-exposure OHE system, which were summarized in the following 5 dimensions: (1) problems of identifying asbestos-exposed workers; (2) difficulties in verifying asbestos exposure; (3) uncertainty in choosing a suitable screening tool and in ensuring qualified personnel; (4) lack of financial resources and administrative support; and (5) problems of moral hazards. Conclusions: All of the interviewed OHPs agreed that the establishment of a post-exposure OHE system is needed, not just for asbestos-exposed workers, but for workers exposed to other types of hazardous substances with long disease latencies. To design the system and its implementation procedures, more discussions are needed, especially with respect to the aforementioned issues.
|Appears in Collections:||健康政策與管理研究所|
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