184578 Nanotechnology: A new challenge for the occupational health and safety field in Puerto Rico

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Manuel Santiago-Cabrera, MPH , Department of Environmental Health, Industrial Hygiene Program, University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus, Graduate School of Public Health, San Juan, PR
Lida Orta-Anes, PhD , Department of Environmental Health, Graduate School of Public Health, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, PR
Nanotechnology has been shown to be an effective tool for the development of new industrial processes. Nanoparticles have unique physical and chemical properties that allow their dimensions to be between 1 and 100 nanometers. Due to the increase in its applications, continuous evaluation of their effects on human health is needed. The National Science Foundation estimates that, for the year 2015, nanotechnology will have an impact on the global economy of $1 trillion and will employ 2 million workers (NIOSH, 2006). Scientific studies have established the need of increasing the available data on the adverse health effects of occupational exposure to nanoparticles. The objective of this work is to develop a systematic review of the available data aimed towards the identification of the most critical areas to be developed in nanotechnology research. The areas systematically reviewed are: Toxicity and Internal Dose, Exposure Evaluation, Epidemiological Surveillance, Monitoring Methods, Control Systems, Security Practices, and Education. Data found and compiled from published scientific research will allow us to establish practical guidelines to be used by Puerto Rican institutions when faced by potential risks. It will also be useful to show the importance of establishing health and security programs focused on nanoparticles management.

Learning Objectives:
1. Recognize the importance of Nanotechnology as a new occupational health and safety issue in Puerto Rico. 2. Discuss the critical areas established by NIOSH to develop an occupational health and safety program.

Keywords: Occupational Health, Occupational Safety

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have participated as presenter in APHA meeting 2006 and 2007.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.