ICMR-NIOH & PHFI Capacity Building Workshop for primary care physicians in occupational health for unorganized sector workers, 06-08 March 2020
Recognising the need to strengthen knowledge and expertise in occupational health diseases amongst workers from the unorganised sector, the National Institute of Occupational Health, an ICMR institute and the Training Division of the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) organised a three-day training programme for primary care physicians from 6th March 2020 to 8th March 2020 at ICMR-NIOH Ahmedabad. The World Health organisation and the International Labour Organisation are technical partners to the workshops. The workshop was inaugurated by Dr. Kamalesh Sarkar (Director-NIOH), Dr. Manjeet Saluja (NPO, WHO-India), Dr.U.C. Ojha (Director- IOHER,ESIC Hospital, Basaidarapur, New Delhi, Dr.B.N.Patel (Asst. Director-DISH Gujarat), Dr.Suneela Garg (Dir. Professor-HAG, MAMC, Delhi) and Dr. Sandeep Bhalla (Director-Training, PHFI). The workshops have participants from the government sector medical officers from the state governments of Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
Dr Kamalesh Sarkar, Director, ICMR – NIOH Ahmedabad participated WHO Meeting 25-28 Nov, 2019 at WHO Geneva, Switzerland
Dr Kamalesh Sarkar, Director, ICMR – NIOH Ahmedabad interacted with the experts during the WHO meeting on Landscape Forum on Mental Health and the Workplace - 25-27 November 2019 and WHO round table "Healthier and safe workplaces for all workers : Delivering as one" on 28th November 2019, at World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.
5th India International Science Festival Expo, Kolkata 5-8 Nov 2019
Hon’ble Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan visited ICMR Exhibition “Striving towards healthier India” at 5th India International Science Festival Expo inaugurated at Science Centre Kolkata. The Secretary DHR and DG, ICMR Prof Balram Bhargava, Scientist G & Head (P&I) Dr Neeraj Tandon, and Director ICMR-NIOH Dr Kamalesh Sarkar welcomed and apprised him of the activities and achievements of DHR and ICMR
ICMR-NIOH in collaboration with Public Health Foundation of India organized curriculum review meeting on Occupational Health Programme on 9th August 2019 at ICMR-NIOH, Ahmedabad
ICMR-NIOH in collaboration with Public Health Foundation of India organized curriculum review meeting on Occupational Health Programme on 9th August 2019 at ICMR-NIOH, Ahmedabad. ICMR-NIOH and PHFI proposed to hold a three days workshop for Healthcare Professionals on Occupational Health Programme: Care and Compliance of Unorganized Sector Workers Perspective for the Primary Healthcare Professionals (OHP-CAPH) will be held during 6th to 8th March 2020. The International Labour Organization’ will be the technical partner for this course.
Consultative Meeting for Development of Curriculum Framework for Occupational Health Program developed by ICMR-NIOH & PHFI
The National Institute of Occupational Health, an ICMR institute and the Training Division of the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) is developing a unique programme designed for the Care and Compliance of Unorganized Sector Workers Perspective for Primary Health Care Professionals (OHP-CAPH). A consultative meeting for the development of the curriculum framework for the occupational health program was held in NIOH on 29-30 March 2019.Leading experts in various aspects of occupational health Dr. R Manivelan, Nodal officer, NHM, Tamil Nadu, Dr. K U Mistry, Former Chairman – GPCB, Dr. T K Joshi, Advisor on Environmental Health, Ministry of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change, Govt. of India, Dr. Tsuyoshi Kawakami, Senior OSH Specialist, International Labour Organization DWT New Delhi, Dr. Suneela Garg, Director Professor & Head, Department of Community Medicine, Maulana Azad Medical College, Dr. Kamalesh Sarkar, Director – NIOH, Dr Dileep Mavalankar, Director , Indian Institute of Public Health Gandhinagar, PHFI, and Dr Sandeep Bhalla, Director, Training, PHFI were present. Representative from the International Labour Organization provided technical expertise to the program. Representative from WHO, Dr. Ivan D. Ivanov, Team leader, Global workplace Health, Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health, WHO Headquarters, Geneva also provided his technical inputs for this consultative meeting.
Dr. Kamalesh Sarkar, Director, ICMR-NIOH, on the need for the programme said,” Occupational health is defined as the highest degree of physical, mental and social well-being of workers in all occupations. It is the branch of healthcare which deals with all aspects of health and safety at the workplace. It lays strong emphasis on the prevention of hazards at a primary level. India is increasingly becoming a preferred location for setting up of industrial companies. There is a need to design a program to address the occupational healthcare needs of the unorganized sector in the Indian context and provide training and build a strong cohort of primary care physicians and allied health professionals with core competencies in providing occupational healthcare. The ICMR-NIOH has collaborated with PHFI to develop this programme. International Labour Organization is the technical partner for this workshop. This will be developed by end of the year.”
Dr. Sandeep Bhalla, Director, Training, PHFI said, “Awareness of occupational diseases is found to be low across India and its reporting is not very consistent. Factors influencing this issue include lack of reliable diagnosis, follow-ups and apparent shortage of occupational health specialists in the country.
He added, that the overall objective of the workshop is to develop/update a standard teaching protocol and module for evidence based learning on occupational healthcare. This will enable building a network of primary care physicians and allied health professionals in the field of occupational healthcare. This workshop will update primary care physicians and allied health professional with the latest advancements in the field of occupational healthcare and provide an opportunity to discuss the difficulties, problems and obstacles faced by occupational healthcare professionals even after completion of the workshop and provide technical assistance/hand holding to the occupational healthcare professionals for one year.”
With the increasing opportunities for organizations to invest and operate in India, it also brings forth challenges in mitigating occupational and workplace health risks. With a population exceeding 1.2 billion, India has a strong workforce of over 465 million. However, only 20% of them are covered under the existing health and safety legal framework. Occupational health and safety is no longer limited to individuals working in physically demanding jobs or exposed to industrial/regulated environments. It now influences a larger section of the Indian workforce, especially in the service sector where companies may not recognize significant occupational risks, but have to manage the consequences of emerging risks, such as NCDs and other HR challenges impacting profitability and sustainability.
Following this consultative meeting, the major challenges, issues and obstacles related to the service delivery related to the occupational health and also the ways to overcome it. The recommendations emerging from this consultative meeting will be provided to both Ministry of Health as well as Ministry of Labour to improve the occupational health scenario of the country particularly for the unorganized sector which is at present non-existent in India.
Due to the variety of industries present in India, there are varying trends in occupational related health conditions from one industry to another. A few common occupational health related conditions encountered in heavy industries, and in those categorized as having hazardous operations, include noise-induced hearing loss, vibration-related disorders and poisoning. The categories of major occupational diseases in India are: occupational injuries, occupational lung diseases, occupational infections, occupational toxicology and occupational mental disorders.
A grouping of major occupational disorders in India according to the etiological factors includes-Occupational Injuries like: ergonomics related, chemical occupational factors (like dust, gases, acid, alkali, metals etc.), physical occupational factors (like noise, heat, radiation etc.), biological occupational factors, behavioural occupational factors, social occupational factors.
Mr. M R Chawla, PA at ICMR-NIOH, Ahmedabad has been awarded with “Yuva Gaurav Puraskar” of Gujarat Sahitya Academy, Govt. of Gujarat, Gandhinagar. Young writers of Gujarat are honoured for their total contribution in the field of literature by conferring this award by the President of Academy and the Chief Minister of Gujarat. A trophy with garland and a certificate of appreciation (Sanmanpatra) with a cheque of Rs.50,000/- was given to Mr. Chawla on 02/12/2018 in the award ceremony held at Ahmedabad. Earlier, in the year 2015, Mr. Chawla had been awarded by the Central Sahitya Academy, Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India for his collection of Ghazals and Poems entitled ‘Pinjraa’. On behalf of this Institute, the Director, ICMR-NIOH congratulates him and offers best wishes for his future achievements
Dr. Koji Mori, Professor, Department of Occupational Health Practice and Management, Institute of Industrial Ecological Sciences, University of Occupational and Environmental Health, Japan along with his team visited ICMR – National Institute of Occupational Health Ahmedabad on 04th December 2018. Dr Mori presented various activities related occupational health and interacted with the scientists of the ICMR-NIOH on the various aspects of Occupational health and safety. Dr. Kamalesh Sarkar Director ICMR-NIOH Ahmedabad briefed the research activities of the institute to the group.
Convocation ceremony of 2nd batch of Associate Fellow of Industrial Health was held on 28/11/2018 at ICMR-NIOH Regional Occupational Health Centre, Bangalore. Dr Kamalesh Sarkar, Director ICMR-NIOH Ahmedabad distributed certificate to students on this occasion .
The inaugural function of 3rd National Training on “Advanced Instrumentation in Ergonomics for Occupational Health research” was held on 3rd October 2018. This program was partially sponsored by ICMR-DHR, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India and Gujarat Council of Science and Technology, Government of Gujarat. A total of forty participants of 21 national institutes from 14 states of India participated in the programme. Shri MF Dastoor, Chief Fire Officer and Director, State Fire Prevention Services, Gujarat State graced the occasion as Chief Guest, who spoke about the importance of Ergonomics in the present work scenario. Dr. Kamalesh Sarkar, Director ICMR-NIOH spoke about Institute’s endeavour in research on occupational and environmental health to provide a safe, healthy and comfortable work environment. Shri Joydeep Majumder, Scientist-C and Programme Coordinator briefed about the programme. The vote of thanks was proposed by Dr Rekha Kashyap, Scientist-F.
The Workshop on Research Methods for Biological Science Students 05-07 September 2018 supported by Gujarat Council of Science & Technology, Department of Science, Govt of Gujarat was conducted. Descriptive Studies, Analytical Study Designs, Introduction to Ethical Issues, Interventional/Experimental studies, Sampling methods and sample size determination, Data Entry and Management: Database creation, data entry, data manipulation/ transformation and importing external databases, Descriptive Statistics, Test of Significance, Correlation and Regression, Epidemiological tests were covered during the workshop and Demonstration/Hands on training were provided on the above topics in statistical software such as SPSS.
Green Skill Development Programme on “Laboratory Assistant for Eco-Friendly Food Testing Laboratory” at ENVIS-NIOH Resources Partner, ICMR-NIOH, Ahmedabad has been started on 23rd July, 2018. The Inaugural function was started with Prayer by Dr. Mamta Purohit and Lighting of Lamp by Dr. Chander Shekhar, Additional Director General, ICMR New Delhi. Welcome Address was given by Dr. H. G. Sadhu, Scientist-F, ICMR-NIOH. He gave brief introduction of chief guest Dr. Chander Shekhar and acknowledged MoEF&CC.