Safety and Health at Work are two closely related activities, aimed at ensuring working conditions capable of maintaining the health level of workers. It is one of the main bases for the preservation of the labor force and the achievement of the proposed objectives, for which an adequate health plan is required, with clear prevention rules, depending on the needs.
These concepts are very important because they are related to the physical and psychological conditions of the workers and to preserve the labor force; that is why there are adequate health plans and clear prevention rules in the workplace.
Health at work
These are the norms and procedures focused on taking care of the physical and mental integrity of the worker, preserving him/her from the risks related to the tasks performed, and the environment where they are executed on a daily basis.
It is related to the study, diagnosis, and prevention of illnesses and their work environment; in other words, it is of a preventive nature, since it is aimed at the health and well-being of the worker, tending to prevent him from becoming ill or being absent from work temporarily or permanently.
It forms a set of knowledge and techniques dedicated to recognize, evaluate, and control those environmental, psychological, or stress factors, that come from work and can cause illness or deteriorate health.
To eliminate the causes of occupational diseases.
To reduce the harmful effects caused
by working on sick people or people with physical defects.
Preventing the worsening of diseases
Maintain the health of workers.
Increase productivity by controlling the work environment.
These objectives can be achieved with:
The education of all members of the company, indicating the existing dangers and teaching how to avoid them.
The constant maintenance of the alert state to the existing risks in the factory.
The studies and observations of new processes or materials that can be used.
The companies' health plan involves medical, nursing, and first aid services, such as:
Adequate medical services,
Medical examinations for admission.
Elimination and control of unhealthy areas.
Adequate medical records.
Health and safety supervision
Periodic medical examinations and check-ups.
Prevention of health risks
Chemical risks (intoxications, industrial dermatoses)
Physical risks (noise, extreme temperatures, ionizing and non-ionizing radiation).
Information program aimed at improving life habits
Let us remember that health at work seeks to preserve and improve the integrity of workers in relation to the work they do, and this is deeply influenced by three groups of conditions:
Environmental working conditions: These are the circumstances that surround the worker while performing his activities, such as lighting, atmospheric conditions, and noise.
Time conditions: duration of the workday work, overtime, breaks, etc.
Social conditions: they have to do with the working environment or climate.
Safety at work
Safety is the techniques, educational, medical, and psychological employed to prevent accidents, and unsafe conditions in the work environment, which aims to instruct workers about the need for the use of preventive practices.
A safety plan involves the following:
The branch of activity.
The areas: production, offices, warehouses, in general, implies all the areas of a company.
Control and compliance with safety standards, accident simulation, periodic inspections of fire control equipment, first aid, distribution of personnel clothing in certain areas.
Safety instructions for newly hired workers.
Safety at work is focused on three main areas:
The security services have the objective of establishing norms and procedures, putting into practice the possible resources to achieve the prevention of accidents, controlling the results obtained. The program must be established through the application of adequate security measures, carried out through teamwork.
Basic Concepts of Safety and Health at Work
1. Safety at work is the need for direct and exclusive action on accidents that result in injury.
2. An accident at work is an undesirable event that causes loss of property, work processes, and people.
3. Workplace is the physical place where the worker performs the assigned tasks, either inside or outside a work center or factory.
4. Causes of work accidents are the result of contact with a substance or source of energy (mechanical, electrical, chemical, etc.), which can be caused by personal factors and work factors, considered unsafe acts and safe conditions.
5. The most common unsafe conditions
Unprotected points of operation
Defective material or tools
Excessive levels of dust, fumes, gases, and vapors
Uncontrolled exposure and excessive noise
Poor ventilation and lighting.
Faulty equipment situation in the case of stairs, floors, ladders, hand tubes, etc.
6. The most frequent unsafe acts
Lifting loads incorrectly
Being in dangerous places
Do not use personal protective equipment
Starting machinery or equipment without authorization
Not giving prior notice of the critical intervention being practiced
Using improper equipment and materials for specific work
Making practical jokes
Not practicing personal hygiene
Driving without authorization
Use of inappropriate equipment
Using the equipment in an unsafe manner