Special care workers can expose themselves to a variety of health hazards, including contaminants in their work environments, if they are exposed to hazardous chemicals or contaminants while wearing protective gear, according to a new study.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have published several studies documenting the dangers of working in hospitals and nursing homes, and the study from the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and Allied Health (SOMAH) adds to the body of evidence.
In the new study, researchers found that workers exposed to lead and other hazardous chemicals while wearing hazardous medical equipment had higher risks for a variety health problems, including elevated blood pressure, heart attack and stroke, as well as chronic diseases such as cancer.
In addition, those exposed to mercury in hospital settings had a greater risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and leukemia, as compared to those who were not exposed to any of the hazardous chemicals, the study found.
The researchers found the risk of health problems associated with hazardous exposures to lead increased by 20% in workers exposed at work, and by 15% in those exposed while wearing gloves or masks.
Lead, which is used in paints, paints and epoxy to bond together various materials, has been linked to various health problems.
The study was published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine and included the first large-scale investigation of the health effects of exposure to lead in workers who worked in hazardous settings.
Researchers from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) conducted the study, which included interviews with 2,071 workers and analyzed data from more than 2,000 workers, the majority of whom were employed in the U, and 2,300 workers who were non-workers.
The survey found that more than 3.6 million workers and 1.9 million non-working household workers are exposed, with 1.4 million exposed in hospitals, nursing homes and hospitals.
The number of workers exposed has been on the rise in the past decade.
The CDC reported last year that the number of U.K. workers exposed rose by 16% between 2014 and 2015, with more than 1 million workers exposed.
The average time workers spent in hospital was 6.5 hours, up from 6.1 hours in 2011, the report said.
In terms of health effects, the researchers found elevated blood pressures among workers exposed, including those who worked for hospitals and hospitals-based outpatient clinics.
Lead was also found to be associated with elevated risk of kidney, lung and bladder cancer.
Lead is used as a paint and sealant in many medical applications, and it is often added to plastic and vinyl products to make them stronger.
In the U., workers who work in hospitals or hospitals-affiliated outpatient clinics are required to wear protective gear.
The federal government has a program called Lead and Lead-Free Certification that provides training for employers on lead safety.
Lead was found to increase risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke among workers, but the risk increased when workers worked in hospitals with high rates of lead exposure.
The study found that the health risks increased in workers in the top quintile of exposure compared to workers in lower income quintiles.
Researchers also found elevated rates of diabetes among workers in hospitals.
However, the findings of the study did not include data on health effects associated with exposure to other toxins.
The CDC recommends that workers wear protective clothing, including gloves, masks and protective gear when working at hospitals and healthcare facilities.
The U.M.S.-based organization also recommends that people avoid exposure to hazardous materials during pregnancy and nursing home visits.
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