Work-related Health: Core Areas of Knowledge and Competence, Part 1

It is not possible to describe a nicely complex and dynamic process such as work-related health nursing simply in terms of core activities or tasks. Work-related Health Nurse (OHA) are constantly learning Sildenax Funciona new skills, having current practices to meet new needs and developing new solutions to fixing problems and therefore their practice is not static but is constantly improving in relation to a core array of skills.

However, through this reduction it is possible to describe those core areas of knowledge and competence that work-related health nurses use. The following list is not intended to be exhaustive, but alternatively to give an indication of the wide range of competencies that work-related health nurses demonstrate in practice.

The Clinician

Primary prevention

The OHA is skilled in primary prevention of injury or disease. The nurse may identify the necessity for, assess and plan interventions to, for example modify working environments, systems of work or change working practices in order to reduce the risk of hazardous exposure. Work-related health nurses are skilled in considering factors, such as human behavior and habits in relation to actual working practices. The nurse can also collaborate in the identification, understanding and correction of work factors, choice of individual protective equipment, prevention of industrial injuries and diseases, as well as providing advice in matters concerning protection of the environment. Because of the work-related health nurses close association with the workers, and knowledge and experience in the working environment, they are in a good position to spot early changes in working practices, identify workers concerns over health and safety, and by presenting these to management in an independent objective manner can be the catalyst for changes on the job that lead to primary prevention.

Emergency care

The OHA is a Registered nurse with a great deal of clinical experience and expertise when controling sick or injured people. The nurse may, where such duties form part of their job, provide initial emergency care of workers injured at work prior to transfer of the injured worker to hospital or the arrival of the emergency services. In many instances, where hazardous conditions exist at work, or where the workplace is far taken from other health care facilities, this role will form a major part of an work-related health nurse’s job. Work-related health nurses doing work in mines, on oil rigs, in the desert regions or in areas where the health care systems are not yet fully developed will be familiar with a wide range of emergency care techniques and may are suffering from additional skills in order to fulfill this role. For others, who are in situations where the emergency services are on hand, they may simply provide an additional level of support beyond that given by the industrial first aider.

Nursing prognosis

Work-related health nurses are skilled in assessing patient’s health care needs, establish a nursing prognosis and formulating appropriate nursing care plans, in conjunction with the patient or client groups, to meet those needs. Nurses can then implement and evaluate nursing interventions designed to own care objectives. The nurse has a prominent role in assessing the needs of individuals and groups, and has the ability to analyze, misinterpret, plan and implement strategies to achieve specific goals. Along with nursing process the nurse contributes to workplace health management and by so doing helps to improve the fitness of the working population at the shop floor level. Nursing prognosis is a managing concept that will not focus solely on the treating a specific disease, but alternatively considers the whole person and their health care needs in the broadest context. It is a health based model rather than a disease based model and nurses have the skills to apply this process with the working populations they serve.

The health advice and health assessment

The OHA will be able to give advice on a wide range of health issues, and particularly on their relationship to working ability, health and safety at work or where modifications to the job or working environment can be meant to take account of the changing health status of employees.

In many respects employers are not solely concerned with only those conditions that are directly caused by work, but do want their work-related health staff to help address any health-related problems that may arise that might influence the employees presence or performance at work, and many employees appreciate this level of help being provided to them at the workplace because it is so convenient for them. In particular the development of health care services to men at work, younger populations and those from ethnic groups can be most effective in reaching these sometimes difficult to reach populations.

Research and the use of evidence based practice

In addition to utilizing information and knowledge produced by research in various fields to support activities that relate to the work-related health component of their role, work-related health nurses will also utilize fully research information available from many fields to help support the reccommended health of the working population.

Specialist

Work-related health policy, and practice development, setup and evaluation

The specialist work-related health nurse may be involved, with senior management in the company, in developing the workplace health policy and strategy including areas of work-related health, workplace health promotion and environmental health management. The WOW nurse is in a good position to advise management on the setup, monitoring and evaluation of workplace health management strategies and to participate fully in each of these development. Possibility to perform that role vary upon level of nurse education, skills and experience.

Work-related health assessment

OHA’s can play an essential role in health assessment for fitness to work, pre-employment or pre-placement examinations, recurrent health examinations and individual health lab tests for lifestyle risk factors.

Collaboration with work-related physician may be necessary in many instances, based on exiting legislation and accepted practice. The nurse can also play an important role on the job where informal desires for information, advice on health care matters and health-related problems come to light. The nurse is able to observe the individual or group of workers in relation to experience of a particular threat and trigger appropriate targeted health assessment where necessary. These activities are often, but not exclusively, undertaken in conjunction with the medical adviser so that where problems are identified a safe system for onward suggestion exists.

Health security

Where workers are exposed to certain amount of walk away risk of exposure and health security is required for legal reasons the OHA will be involved in undertaking routine health security procedures, recurrent health assessment and in evaluating the results from such screening processes. The nurse will need a high degree of clinical skill when undertaking health security as well as a high degree of alertness to any abnormal findings. Early suggestion to an work-related health physician or other appropriate specialist will be the responsibility of the work-related health nurse where any abnormality is detected. The nurse will be involved in supporting the worker throughout further examination or investigation, and may help to monitor their health on get back to work. Once informed to the possibility of an adverse health effect the work-related health nurse is in a good position to co-ordinate efforts to re-evaluate working practices in order to help protect others who may be similarly affected.

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