Indian Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine   Official publication of Indian Association of  0ccupational  Health  
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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 70-77

A study of the effectiveness of workplace health and safety programmes in a university setting in Canada

Division of Community Health and Humanities, Faculty of Medicine, Memorial University, St John's, NL, A1B 3V6, Canada

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Atanu Sarkar
9914M110, Division of Community Health and Humanities, Faculty of Medicine, Health Sciences Centre, Memorial University, St John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, A1B 3V6
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijoem.ijoem_295_20

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Introduction: Nearly a quarter-million people work in universities in Canada, making it one of the fastest-growing sectors. Although each university provides occupational health and safety services and training programmes to their employees, there have been no studies conducted on the impact of such programmes on employees' knowledge, attitude and behaviour. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of dissemination of information of workplace health and safety programmes to workers at a Canadian university. Methods: The study compared two cross-sectional online surveys of employees of a Canadian university regarding workplace health and safety with a previously conducted cross-sectional study and thematic analysis of key informant interviews to address the issues raised in the surveys. Results: Participation in health and safety presentations could enhance understanding and practices of safety. Age, employment status and duration of employment were associated with the levels of knowledge, attitudes and behaviour of employees and graduate students. The key informant interviews highlighted some new initiatives such as the establishment of workplace health and safety committees in all university buildings; the development of a safety app and health and safety management system; routine annual inspections of all university building offices and laboratories; new orientation for undergraduate students where general safety rules are described. Discussion: University should have regular presentations on the available health and safety programmes and should increase the number of safety training programmes and keep track of the employees that have not received any training, particularly for those working in hazardous environments.


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