More than 600 rebuild workers to receive free mini health checks on site
Blood pressure and cholesterol will be some of the tests carried out on more than 600 Canterbury rebuild workers over the next fortnight to help raise awareness about health hazards on site.
WorkSafe New Zealand with support from ACC and the Canterbury Rebuild Safety Charter will be rolling out its occupational health van in the CBD and on residential sites from 29 June until 8 July.
“The van was first introduced in March this year where we saw around 400 rebuild workers undergo mini health checks and receive free advice on occupational health on site – it was a huge success,” says Kathryn Heiler, WorkSafe’s Canterbury Rebuild Health and Safety Programme Director.
“When we talk about health and safety, many organisations have really improved their safety processes, but the health is often left behind,” Ms Heiler says.
“The occupational health van is one way of educating workers about the health risks they face on site – such as dust, noise, asbestos, exposure to hazardous substances or chemicals and fatigue,” she says.
Nurses will be on site with the van to take a look at workers health offering mini health checks involving blood pressure and blood sugar tests as well as cholesterol tests.
WorkSafe and ACC will also be carrying out toolbox talks on site – raising awareness and educating workers about health risks. These will focus particularly on dust and fatigue.
“We know from the Safety Charter’s Assessment tool that many signatories are saying they need more support around fatigue,” says Ms Heiler. “As a result the Charter’s produced a toolbox talk and poster on fatigue – the start of a series of tools to help organisations improve in this area.”
The occupational health van will be in the CBD from 29 June – 3 July and on residential sites from 6-8 July. “We want to build on the work we did earlier this year in raising awareness of the ‘health’ in health and safety – to ultimately reduce the number of people becoming ill because they’ve been exposed to a health risk through their work,” Ms Heiler says.