WHWB Forum

Welcome to the Workplace Health Without Borders Forum.

This is where we  post news items related to WHWB projects and issues that we believe are important to the international occupational hygiene community. In addition to this website, we communicate with our membership through a monthly teleconference, using the Calliflower web-conferencing application. We have also recently started a newsletter, which will be sent to everyone on our email distribution list. To learn how to connect to the teleconference, go to this page.

If you have registered with WHWB, please login using the Login link at upper right to post your ideas and comments on the forum. If you have not registered, but wish to do so, read this then send an email to the webmaster at: webmaster@whwb.org. If you have comments on the web site, please contact the webmaster.


New Malaysian Calliflower Number

Today I received this message from Calliflower, our web conferencing provider.

Dear WHWB,

In order to continue to offer you the highest quality of service, it has become necessary for us to replace our Malaysia local access number on our Hosted platform.

The following Kuala Lumpur number (+60) (0)3-8988-5436 will be removed on Friday, August 21, 2015, and replaced with the new Kuala Lumpur number (+60) (0)3-9212-1934.

Please distribute this information as soon as possible to any callers that may be using these numbers.

If you have any questions regarding this change, please contact our Customer Service department at 1-416-479-9648 or you may email us at support@calliflower.com.

Of course if you do not live near Kuala Lumpur, this information may be of limited use to you. If that is the case and if you do not live in a city with a Calliflower local access number you should really consider using Calliflower Connect to attend our teleconferences and other meetings. You will find instructions for using Calliflower Connect here. As usual, if you have any questions or experience difficulties please send us a message via the contact page or email me at webmaster@whwb.org.


WHWB – Spreading the Word

WHWB in Ecuador 1WHWB is known by people in more than 35 countries, through several cooperative field projects, teaching, mentoring and information sharing. To encourage interest in occupational health and safety and foster international cooperation, some WHWB members have met with local people in industry and academia during their holidays in other countries. Scientists, engineers and physicians outside of the OHS field are often very interested in applying their skills and knowledge to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses.

We invite you to carry a few WHWB brochures and bookmarks with you when you travel abroad to introduce people to WHWB. You can request this literature by emailing info@whwb.org.

Submitted by Marguerite Pilger

WHWB in the UK

Today’s BOHS webinar about “Workplace Health Without Borders” was a great success with over 40 members participating. WHWB Board member, Mary O’Reilly, spoke about the organisation, its origins, aims, objectives and projects and was received enthusiastically. This was followed by a discussion on promoting and developing WHWB in the United Kingdom.

If you  would like to watch the recording of the webinar, it can be accessed here.

We are holding a tele-conference Wednesday July 15 at 1 p.m. to discuss what we can do in the UK. Email mike.slater@whwb.org before then if you would like to participate.

WHWB Meeting in SLC

Matt Macomber contributed this picture from the WHWB meeting at AIHcE in Salt Lake City. Thanks Matt!


How Can We Do Better?

Anyone working in the field of occupational health and safety would enjoy and benefit from reading the revealing and thoughtful writings of Atul Gawande, a surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. In Complications: a surgeon’s notes on an imperfect science, written during his residency in 2002, and in subsequent books,  Better: a surgeons notes on performance (2007), The Checklist Manifesto: how to get things right (2010) and Being Mortal: medicine and what matters in the end (2014), Dr Gawande not only gives us valuable glimpses into the world of medicine but, more important, also gives us insights into what constitutes professional behavior. As an occupational hygienist, I have been able to take away a multitude of lessons from this brilliant practitioner.

Checklists are helpful when preparing for a survey or audit, a lecture or training session or a business trip out of town. Preparing a checklist is an opportunity to include those “extras” that make your job performance even better. Having a detailed checklist ensures that you will not forget those essential elements (such as your business cards, sample labels, ear plugs, safety glasses or laser pointer).

Dr Gawande reminds us that we are only human, and humans frequently make mistakes. We have to live with that knowledge and keep trying to do better.

I recommend all of Atul Gawande’s books highly to members of Workplace Health Without Borders. This is science writing at its best. I look forward to hearing your thoughts (Please comment, below).

Submitted by Marguerite Pilger

Important Documents from ICOH2015

Claudina Nogueira, WHWB board member from South Africa, has shared the following document links with the WHWB membership following her attendance at the recent ICOH2015 conference in Seoul.

Occupational Health and Safety Guide for Entrepreneurs, Owners and Managers
A PDF version of this guide can be downloaded from here.

Seoul Declaration on Occupational Health Services for All 

Third edition of the ICOH Code of Ethics for Occupational Health Professionals, 2014