141st APHA Annual Meeting

In This section

Vietnamese nail salon workers and occupational health and safety practices

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 10:30 AM - 10:50 AM

Lori A. Edwards, DrPH, MPH, RN, APHN, BC , School of Nursing Department of Community Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
Jacqueline Agnew, RN, MPH, PhD , Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD
Background: Vietnamese nail salon workers are a vulnerable population at risk for health disparities, comprising the majority of nail salon workers in the U.S. They are exposed to several occupational health risks—including ergonomic stressors and toxic chemicals. Health and safety guidelines have been developed for these workers. Method: Our study evaluated adherence to these guidelines and identified factors to promote their adoption. Using community-based participatory research we conducted a cross-sectional survey of 176 Vietnamese nail salon workers. We focused on predictors of use of protective equipment specifically tables with ventilation, trashcans, hand tools, and chairs. We used the integrative model of behavioral prediction as our conceptual framework. Results: Our findings demonstrated that the strongest predictors of safety and health practices were training about equipment and beliefs that it can be protective. For equipment that minimized chemical exposures workers were 4.5 to 7.4 times more likely to use if trained. If they believed that the equipment would protect their health, they were 6.2 to 7.2 times more likely to use it. For ergonomic practices, workers were 13.5 times more likely to use hand tools if they believed it was protective and 3.5 times more likely to use these if trained. For ergonomic features related to chairs, training was a significant predictor. Owner/managers differed in their beliefs regarding the importance of training materials. Conclusions: Policy approaches at the organizational level and at the regulatory level could ultimately protect the health of this vulnerable working population, and our findings supported our recommendations.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related nursing

Learning Objectives:
Describe Vietnamese nail salon workers predictors to adherence of recommended occupational health and safety practices. Discuss policy recommendations for nail salon workers. Describe community based participatory research approaches in collaboration with Vietnamese nail salon workers

Keywords: Asian Americans, Occupational Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been a principal investigator and a researcher on several grants. I have received internally funded grants and completed all the necessary research compliance certifications and have received IRB approval for all of my research studies. My scientific interests and studies have focused on community based participatory research and Vietnamese nail salon workers. Implications for this research are directly related to my practice and certification as a public health nurse.
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.