Assisting the Bay State's occupational health nurses to better protect their clients and themselves against workplace safety and health hazards is the goal of a new alliance among OSHA, the Massachusetts Association of Occupational Health Nurses (MaOHN) and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' Division of Occupational Safety's consultation program, according to a recent OSHA release.
"Occupational nurses are the professionals who first
see and treat on-the-job injuries and illnesses," said Marthe Kent, OSHA's
regional administrator for New England. "That puts them on the front line
of employee protection. This alliance will help occupational nurses use that
unique position to educate employers and employees to identify and eliminate
workplace hazards before they sicken or injure employees."
Under the alliance, according to the release, OSHA's three
Massachusetts offices will work with MaOHN and DOS to develop training and
education programs for employers and employees as well as for the MaOHN members
who serve them. Training for employees and employers will focus on, among
others, the hazards posed by exposure to noise, silica and lead in various
industries. For occupational health professionals, the training will encompass
safeguards against bloodborne pathogens, tuberculosis and other hazards
associated with the health industry.
The alliance partners also will work to communicate
information on the recognition and prevention of hazards, share best practices
and encourage MaOHN members' and clients' participation in OSHA's cooperative