The annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work on April 28 promotes the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally. The World Day for Safety and Health 2022 focuses on enhancing social dialogue towards a culture of safety and health. The initiative was started in the year 2003 by the International Labour Organization (ILO), which aims to stress the importance of preventing accidents and diseases at work.
The theme set for this year's World Day for Safety and Health at Work is 'Act together to build a positive safety and health culture'. This theme focuses on encouraging workplaces to foster a strong work health and safety culture where everyone contributes to a safe and healthy work environment.
To know some more about how this day is observed, Fit Northeast visited the Guwahati Refinery to know more about the measures taken by the refinery authorities for the safety and health issues of the workers under them. After visit to the refinery, Fit Northeast came to know that in Guwahati refinery, there were two prominent departments.
One was the one which was looking after the health issues and related problems of the workers and other was the Development and Training department which was looking after the training and safety part of the workers.
The theme set for this year's World Day for Safety and Health at Work is 'Act together to build a positive safety and health culture'.First Fit Northeast approached a senior health official at the refinery. In conversation with the medical officer, we came to know that the medical officers at the refinery try their level best to provide the best health services to the workers and their family members of the refinery.
The medical officer at the refinery said that health camps are conducted after frequent intervals, where the basic health tests like some blood tests, ultrasonography, and checking of the blood pressure are done to ensure the good health conditions of everyone. It was said that before getting employed at the refinery, an overall health check-up of the candidate is done and during this test, the check-up of the eyes are done very carefully, to ensure its good working. Moreover, as some of the persons work in the hazardous areas (or inside the refinery), they are provided emergency medical help in case of any accident.
Apart from that, during Covid times, strict Covid precautionary measures were taken to minimize the spread of the virus. At the entrance gate, there were security personnels who measured every person with a temperature gun and if one's temperature is more than the desired temperature, the person's entry was restricted. Covid screenings were frequently conducted among the workers and their family members.
The persons who were suspected or found positive, were immediately isolated. If there was no provision of separate isolated rooms with bathrooms in their homes/quaters, the patient was immediately sent to the hospital. if the patient preferred to stay at home, a safety medical kit including an oximeter, a thermometer, some medicines of fever, iron, vitamin C and a strip of antibiotic is delivered to the person at his doorstep. Along with the mainstream factory workers, the health check-ups are also done for the cooks, who serve their duties at the kitchen.
Fit Northeast then visited the safety department of the refinery. This department works for the physical safety of the workers. This department trains the workers how to work at the factories and refineries. It also provides safety shields, gloves, spectacles to the people who work in the hazardous atmosphere of the refinery which also has the present of chemicals. This department also provides every employee with employee safety insurance to cover up in case of any accident. They also take initiation of getting regular health check-up done for every worker who is 40 years and above.