EU-OSHA Report Tackles Occupational Cancer Prevention

A new report from the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) identifies information exchange at the international level as one of its top recommendations for improving prevention of occupational cancer. Released on Feb. 4, World Cancer Day, the report highlights new and emerging risks, including nanomaterials, endocrine-disrupting compounds, and shift and night work. According to EU-OSHA, the report aims to describe carcinogens and cancer-causing conditions in the workplace; evaluate sources of information and identify gaps in knowledge; give recommendations for filling these gaps; and describe preventative measures for occupational cancer.

The report describes risk factors for cancer and occupational exposure to carcinogens; new approaches to the assessment and prevention of occupational cancer; and further developments and uses of exposure measurements and estimates. EU-OSHA also lists data sources for occupational exposure to carcinogens. The agency’s report stresses the need to consider the current work environment, which EU-OSHA states is characterized by increased subcontracting, temporary work, multiple jobs, atypical working times, multiple exposures, and other factors. The report also addresses groups that are particularly vulnerable to cancer, including young people, women, and those experiencing high exposures.
“Although cancer research has progressed significantly in the recent past, awareness of occupational cancer risks is still low,” said EU-OSHA Director Christa Sedlatschek, MD. “Therefore, it is crucial that awareness and knowledge of these risks is improved, and this report takes the first step towards this.”
For more information or to download the report, visit EU-OSHA’s website.

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