Automated Monitoring System to Support Investigation of Contributing Factors of Work-Related Disorders and Accidents

Work-related illnesses and disorders have been a constant aspect of work. Although their nature has changed over time, from musculoskeletal disorders to illnesses related to psychosocial aspects of work, its impact on the life of workers remains significant. Despite significant efforts worldwide to protect workers, the disparity between changes in work legislation and actual benefit for workers’ health has been creating a significant economic burden for social security and health systems around the world. In this context, this study aims to propose, test and validate a modular prototype that allows for work environmental aspects to be assessed, monitored and better controlled. The main focus is also to provide a historical record of working conditions and the means for workers to obtain comprehensible and useful information regarding their work environment and legal limits of occupational exposure to different types of environmental variables, as means to improve prevention of work-related accidents and disorders. We show the developed prototype provides useful and accurate information regarding the work environmental conditions, validating them with standard occupational hygiene equipment. We believe the proposed prototype is a cost-effective and adequate approach to work environment monitoring that could help elucidate the links between work and occupational illnesses, and that different industry sectors, as well as developing countries, could benefit from its capabilities.

Work-Related Shoulder Lesions and Labor Lawsuits in Brazil: Cross-Sectional Study on Worker Health Actions Developed by Employers

Introduction: The present study had the objective to present the profile of workers with shoulder disorders related to labor lawsuits in Brazil. The study analyzed the association between the worker’s health and the actions performed by the companies related to injured professional. The research method performed a retrospective, cross-sectional and quantitative database analysis. The documents of labor lawsuits with shoulder injury registered at the Regional Labor Court in the 15th region (Campinas - São Paulo) were submitted to the medical examination and evaluated during the period from 2012 until 2015. The data collected were age, gender, onset of symptoms, length of service, current occupation, type of shoulder injury, referred complaints, type of acromion, associated or related diseases, company actions as CAT (workplace accident communication), compliance of NR7 by the organization (Environmental Risk Prevention Program - PPRA and Medical Coordination Program in Occupational Health - PCMSO). Results: From the 93 workers evaluated, there was a prevalence of men (58.1%), with a mean age of 42.6 y-o, and 54.8% were included in the age group 35-49 years. Regarding the length of work time in the company, 66.7% have worked for more than 5 years. There was an association between gender and current occupational status (p < 0.005), with predominance of women in household occupation (13 vs. 2) and predominance of unemployed men in job search situation (24 vs. 10) and reintegrated to work by judicial decision (8 vs. 2). There was also a correlation between pain and functional limitation (p < 0.01). There was a positive association of PPRA with the complaint of functional limitation and negative association with pain (p < 0.04). There was also a correlation between the sedentary lifestyle and the presence of PCMSO and PPRA (p < 0.04), and the absence of CAT in the companies (p < 0.001). It was concluded that the appearance or aggravation of osseous and articular shoulder pathologies in workers who have undertaken labor law suits seem to be associated with individual habits or inadequate labor practices. These data can help preventing the occurrence of these lesions by implementing local health promotion policies at work.