Oxford Handbook of Occupational Health: book review

Editors: Smedley J, Dick F and Sadhra S
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198567189

This text is an excellent resource, and is exactly as it states on the cover: it is a general textbook of occupational health.

The editors, including Dr Steven Sadhra – senior lecturer in occupational health, University of Birmingham – have engaged an impressive list of more than 20 experts in the specialty of occupational health including Dianna Kloss, barrister and lecturer in occupational health law and Dr John Cherrie, research director, Institute of Occupational Medicine, Edinburgh. The range of contributors reflects the breadth of material presented including occupational hazards and diseases, toxicology, occupational hygiene, safety science and environmental medicine.

The strength of this book is its no-nonsense ‘pocket guide’ approach to a range of topics. It is presented in a straightforward bullet-point format making it a reader-friendly resource for occupational health physicians, nurses and safety advisers, particularly so for those new to the speciality.

I was interested to see that the editors have included a short section on emergencies, which could arise in the workplace such as poisoning, non-chemical emergencies and terrorism, unexpected in a book of this nature, but welcome none the less. I also like the list of useful websites included for further reference.

This book has earned a place on my desk as a first-point of call in a quest for information related to workplace health.

Reviewed by Anne Harriss, OH course director, London South Bank University

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