public health

Tag archives for public health

In a new national survey, about one in every four U.S. workers rates their workplace as just “fair” or “poor” in providing a healthy working environment. And employees in low-paying jobs typically report worse working conditions than those in higher-paying jobs — in fact, nearly half of workers in low-paying jobs say they face “potentially dangerous” conditions on the job.

Mining is one of the most dangerous jobs in America, with more than 600 workers dying in fatal workplace incidents between 2004 and the beginning of July. And many more miners die long after they’ve left the mines from occupational illnesses such as black lung disease, while others live with the debilitating aftermath of workplace injuries. Today, researchers know a great deal about the health risks miners face on the job, but some pretty big gaps remain.

In 2005, the World Health Assembly adopted a revised version of its International Health Regulations, a legally binding treaty among 196 nations to boost global health security and strengthen the world’s capacity to confront serious disease threats such as Ebola and SARS. A decade later, just one-third of countries have the ability to respond to a public health emergency. That’s why Rebecca Katz thinks it’s time to get creative.

Detroit Free Press reporters investigate Michigan’s flawed worker safety oversight system; workers in China’s fireworks factories face life-threatening conditions; New Mexico farmworkers win major workers’ comp victory; and OSHA rules in worker’s favor in asbestos retaliation case.

Dr. Jodi Sherman wants to expand the medical profession’s understanding of patient safety far beyond the exam room and hospital bed. For Sherman, the oft-heard medical mantra of “first do no harm” should also push the health care system to do more to reduce its harmful air emissions and their impact on people’s health.

Low wages certainly impact a person’s health, from where people live to what they eat to how often they can visit a doctor. And low and stagnant wages certainly contribute to poverty, which is a known risk factor for poor health and premature mortality. But should low wages be considered an occupational health hazard?

A couple months ago, we reported on a study that found raising the minimum wage to $15 could have prevented thousands of premature deaths in New York City alone. Now comes more science on the life-saving benefits of higher wages — this one found that just a modest increase in the minimum wage could have saved the lives of hundreds of babies. It’s yet another reminder that the movement for a living wage is also a movement toward a healthier nation for all.

In 2014, more than 28,000 people in the U.S. died from an opioid overdose. That same year, more Americans died from drug overdoses than during any other year on record, with the escalating numbers fueled by opioid abuse. Solutions to the problem are as complex as the epidemic itself, however a recent study pointed to one tool that can make a significant difference: prescription drug monitoring programs.

Reveal investigates the toll of nuclear testing on the country’s “atomic vets”; federal labor officials propose new mining safety rules; D.C. officials vote in support of a $15 minimum wage; and an Amazon employee writes a first-person account from inside one of the company’s warehouses.

In the first large-scale study of its kind, researchers report that sexual trauma is indeed a risk factor for suicide among military veterans and are calling on veteran health providers to continue including such trauma in suicide prevention strategies.