3055.0 Ergonomics Policy Looking Back, Moving Forward

Monday, October 27, 2008: 8:30 AM
Musculoskeletal disorders comprise an estimated one third of reported work-related injuries that result in days lost from work, with important health and economic impacts for affected workers, employers and society as a whole. Regulatory efforts to promote ergonomic controls have generated considerable debate and have seen both failure and limited success at the federal and state level. This panel will provide an overview of those efforts, an update on the current status of ergonomic regulations and a discussion of new initiatives. Presenters represent labor unions, universities, government agencies and COSH groups. They will: 1) summarize the history, and ultimate failure, of efforts to promulgate a federal OSHA standard, 2) describe the clash between science and politics in the context of rulemaking in Washington State including implications for other state efforts, 3) examine the enforcement history of California's standard to prevent repetitive motion injuries, currently the only ergonomics standard in the country, 4) present a case study of a recent Cal/OSHA citation at the LAX Hilton, the first in the hotel industry, describing the convergence of worker education, organizing and regulatory efforts, 5) describe and analyze current rulemaking efforts in Michigan state and, 6) analyze lessons learned from state level rulemaking efforts. Finally, presenters will describe alternative policy approaches to address musculoskeletal disorders including safe patient handling and other legislative initiatives. We pose questions to stimulate discussion about appropriate strategies to prevent musculoskeletal disorders within a changing sociopolitical climate.
Session Objectives: * Upon completion of this session, the participants will be able to list the two elements of the past and future ergonomic policy: * Describe the status of ergonomic regulatory efforts at the state and federal level * Analyze the limitations and possibilities of current policy approaches to control work-related musculoskeletal disorders.
Linda Delp, PhD

8:30 AM
Ergonomics policy - looking back, moving forward
Linda Delp, PhD, Michael Silverstein, MD, MPH, Eden Flynn, MA, Pamela Vossenas, MPH and Barbara A. Silverstein, PhD, MPH

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: Occupational Health and Safety
Endorsed by: Socialist Caucus

CE Credits: CME, Health Education (CHES), Nursing