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Experiences with implementation of evidence-based prevention programs to prevent occupational skin diseases in different occupations

Tidsskriftartikel - 2008

Resume

Occupational skin diseases are among the most frequently recognized occupational diseases in many industrialized countries. This paper describes and review experiences with implementation of interventions to prevent occupational skin diseases in different occupational settings representing the food processing industry and a hospital. The study populations were gut cleaners with all participants being exposed to wet work, cheese dairies and a hospital where all employees were included. The effect of implementation of evidence-based prevention programs were tested by questionnaire surveys on baseline and follow-up. A significant reduction in eczema at hands or forearms was observed among gut cleaners. At cheese dairies the eczema frequencies were low except for a comparison dairy where significant changes were seen. At the hospital a non significant reduction in hand eczema was observed. Changes related to use of protective measures and knowledge on prevention of occupational skin diseases were observed. A process evaluation carried out at the gut cleaning departments showed association between the eczema frequency at follow-up, activities related to prevention and implementation of an occupational health management system. In addition to documenting the scientific background for evidence-based prevention programs to prevent occupational skin diseases in different occupations, both the study population and the study design should be considered carefully when testing the implementation of workplace interventions. These aspects may influence the outcome in different directions and either facilitate or hamper the possibilities to provide scientific documentation of the effect of the intervention tested.

Reference

Flyvholm M, Jepsen K. Experiences with implementation of evidence-based prevention programs to prevent occupational skin diseases in different occupations. G Ital Dermatol Venereol 2008;143(1):71-78.

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