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Orekhova O. V., Pavlenko O. I.


Ukrainian Research Institute of Industrial Medicine, Kryvyi Rih

Full article (PDF), UKR

Introduction. Health of the working population is the most important function of the country, the basis of the social policy, which is implemented in practice by creating safe work environment and healthy living conditions. The purpose of occupational health is to strengthen and preserve the highest degree of physical, mental and social well-being of employees in all spheres of the activity, prevention of disorders in the state of health caused by working conditions, protection of workers from risks due to harmful production factors, distribution and preservation of workers in the production environment to be adapted to physiological and psychological abilities, adaptation of work to workers and each worker to his/ her work conditions (WHO and ILO, 1995).

The purpose of the study was to analyze and summarize the literature data on the problem of occupational risks.

Materials and methods. The analytical review of scientific publications was carried out using foreign special publications, the text database of PUB MED, the databases of the National scientific medical library and the National library of Ukraine named by V. I. Vernadsky.

Results. In recent years there is a problem on assessing and forecasting possible consequences due to non-compliance with hygienic standards. The grounding for changing the strategy and tactics, assessment of occupational risks in relation to occupational diseases and their prevention becomes the basis of modern medicine. And although this trend was started in the world as far as in the 70-ies of the XX century, and the main provisions were contained in the documents and the ISO standards ST 1999, ST-2631, ST-5349, a theory of a "zero risk" was dominated in Ukraine, which was based on maximum acceptable concentrations and on maximum acceptable levels, and their compliance guaranteed preservation of the workers’ health. The basis for the development of the system on occupational health in its modern understanding is the theory on assessment and management of occupational risks, which is intensively developed by domestic and foreign authors. The assessment and management of occupational risks involves analysis and evaluation of workers’ health and the causal relation on conditions, information about risks for a subject on the labour law, and conducting actions to control occupational risks by reducing exposure, radiation effect and the "time protection". When assessing a risk much attention should be paid to the quantitative evaluation of the damage to health in order to choose the most effective measures for controlling, such as prevention, which is the priority of scientific studies and developments in occupational medicine. A modern concept on occupational risk provides the possibility of compensation for harm to health for victims of accidents at work and occupational diseases by the compulsory insurance against accidents and occupational diseases by differentiated tariffs. A new methodology on occupational risks helps in solving the problem of preliminary and periodic medical examinations of workers in hazardous working conditions by identifying and focusing on the most dangerous risks to workers’ health by introduction effective medical technologies and treatment of patients. The risk management is carried out by a combination of organizational, technical, medical, economic and information measures.

Conclusions. Thus, according to the analysis of foreign and domestic studies we can conclude that the choice of strategy in medical care of the working population requires an objective assessment of risks at work, which is possible only on the basis of quantitative estimates of health risks for specific professions in a particular industry that will allow to do health as an "element of management" and help to review economic criteria in order to have real levers on management of occupational risks.

Key words: occupational risk, occupational diseases, workers ' health


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