This week’s news

Asthma practice

There will be a code of practice to counter asthma in the workplace, the
Health and Safety Commission announced following a meeting on World Asthma Day.
The code will form part of a programme for reducing workplace asthma.   Order an HSE video from

Chemical reaction

The Chemical Industries Association has updated its information on
toxicology, with four more briefs in its educational series. They cover
computer predictions of toxicity, inhalation toxicology, eco-toxicology and
reproductive toxicology.  Dr Phillip
Lewis on

Careful handling

A new qualification in manual handling has been launched by the Chartered
Institute of Environmental Health. The Principles of Manual Handling is aimed
at reducing the estimated 50,000 yearly accidents from handling and lifting.

Maternity Update

With the new maternity rights in force, the AOHNP is holding a repeat study
day on Friday 30 June. It will be held at the Maternity Alliance offices,
Barbican, London.  Contact Jane
Hutton-Downey, AOHNP London regional director on 07712 788942 for details.

UKCC survey

The UKCC is to carry
out a study on practitioners working outside the NHS. The study, announced in
the business plan for 2000-2001, will look at the professional, occupational
and educational expectations placed on nurses.

Blood clot risk

Airlines need to
examine the risk of blood clots from long flights, director of the Aviation
Health Institute Farrol Kahn, warned last month. Deep vein thrombosis can be
caused by poor posture and lack of mobility.

Latex guidance

There is new guidance
on the risks of contact with natural latex, the Health & Safety Executive
has announced. It outlines risk assessment processes and precautions for the
potential problems, which include skin irritations and a number of allergic
reactions.   Latex and You, from

McKiernan posting

Mike McKiernan has
been named director of occupational policy at the Engineering Employers
Federation. He is currently health, safety and environmental projects director
at engineering group TRW, which was formerly LucasVarity.

Cut fatigue factor

More sectors should follow the rail industry in applying a fatigue index to
measure risks of accidents from long hours, Dr Anita Levinson, stress
consultant, said. "Fatigue, due to long hours or chronic stress, plays a
large part in accidents."

Small firms miss OH

Few small- and medium-sized organisations use OH services, despite evidence
it is good for business, said Dr David Snashall, chief medical adviser to the
HSE. Clearest proof of the link comes in the work of the Faculty of
Occupational Medicine on back pain.

Safety on the road

Risks of employees driving during their work is a huge problem requiring a
change of corporate attitudes, Nigel Bromley, manager of safety policy and
strategy at BT, said.

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