236 participants at the “MOM-TARIPH Joint Symposium on Lung Health in the Occupational Setting: Prevention, Protection and Promotion” on 10 May 2019
The first Symposium to build competency of the medical community and Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) professionals in Workplace Health, recommendations set out under “Strategy Two - Enhance focus on Workplace Health” of the WSH2028 Tripartite Strategies document.
This joint Symposium was co-organised by Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and The Academic Respiratory Initiative for Pulmonary Health (TARIPH), Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, Nanyang Technological University and supported by WSH Institute (MOM) and College of Public Health and Occupational Physicians, Academy of Medicine, Singapore. The symposium was attended by over 230 participants, comprising of Respiratory Physicians, Occupational Physicians, Occupational Health Nurses, WSH Officers, industrial hygienists, IAQ consultants, researchers and company representatives.
Following the keynote address by Mr Ismadi Mohd, Deputy Commissioner for WSH, three scientists and two regulators shared on important but sometimes unrecognized exposures in the workplace that may affect Lung Health during the 1st session on Occupational Exposures. The exposures highlighted included toxicants, nanomaterials and air microbes, most of which are largely not visible to the naked eye. Participants were reminded to reduce contaminants, improve ventilation and treat supplied air for good Indoor Air Quality (IAQ). They also heard about the chronic health effects of tear gas, besides the more commonly known acute effects. To close off the 1st session, they were informed that silica and asbestos hazards are still present around us and will pose a health threat years later if not properly identified and managed today.
In the 2nd session on Occupational Diseases (OD), three Respiratory Physicians and two Occupational Physicians highlighted on diseases at both ends of the work spectrum. At one end were ODs which were directly caused by work e.g. Occupational Asthma, Silicosis, Asbestosis, Occupational Lung Cancer and Mesothelioma. At the other end of the spectrum were conditions which were not caused by work, but whereby affected workers might need medical assessment on fitness to work and work modifications to continue working. Lastly, doctors were reminded to diagnose Occupational Lung diseases, notify MOM and work with employers to prevent OD, and to protect workers’ right to compensation.
For the abstracts, see the programme booklet here.