The Library of Education in Occupational Safety and Health facilitates access to online lessons, modules and courses, and has the aim to support education and training of professionals all over the world. The final objective is the improvement of working conditions, prevention of work accidents as well as occupational and work-related diseases, optimal work participation of people with disabilities, and appropriate health promotion at the work place.
Lack of experts and professionals
At this moment there is a huge lack of experts and professionals in Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) in most countries in the world. The large majority of workers worldwide still lack any professional support in labor health and safety. The consequence is that millions of workers become ill or even die because of their work. In addition, work participation of people with disabilities does not get chances and health promotion stagnates. The human sufferings and economic consequences of this deficit of well-trained professionals are huge. Education and training in work and health issues, on a large scale, is an essential condition for social and economic development.
Education of OSH experts and other professionals
This library is especially useful for teachers and course participants in schools, institutes and universities offering lessons and courses to educate OSH experts and other professionals involved in prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation in the field of work and health.
OSH experts and professionals include occupational physicians, nurses, hygienists, safety experts, labor inspectors, psychologists, ergonomists and others. The ‘other professionals’ frequently involved in OSH issues within health care include family physicians, nurses, community health workers and prevention professionals in primary and community care, and in addition various medical specialists, nurses and allied health professionals in hospitals. Many professionals working outside health care are involved as well: managers on every level, human resource managers, experts in unions, engineers such as experts in agriculture technology, scientists, teachers in secondary schools and many others.
Why this library?
The library supports education and training through offering easy access to good online learning materials on work, safety and health that are in general free-of-charge. Learning materials can be lessons, modules or courses, but also authoritative texts with educational components, instructive YouTube videos or serious games.
The library as a facility
To facilitate the users in finding the most appropriate material, predefined key terms are used and short descriptions of the lessons and courses. Links are connecting you immediately with the sources everywhere in the world. We selected materials that we thought to be relevant and of good quality. The organization of an international team of skilled and committed reviewers for the selection and description of learning materials is in consideration. In the future we want to facilitate the exchange of materials and experiences between all committed.
Educational institutions, participants and students
The principal users of the library and potential partners may be educational institutions for occupational safety and health. These are mostly part of or connected with universities, national institutes, schools or professional associations. They organize lessons and courses for OSH experts and others.
The final users are the students, course participants and teachers who hopefully benefit a lot from the lessons and courses provided. We are very happy when also workers, supervisors, managers and students who want to learn more about work and health will find and use the library. We hope that all users enjoy the learning and teaching on occupational health and safety. And that, partly based on that, workers and companies will develop safe and healthy working conditions and will benefit of a good occupational health care.
A community of professionals in education
It could be a great support for successful education in workers’ health when there would be an active community of professionals in OSH education, matching the need for certain learning materials with the supply. Such a community can promote not only that the materials offered are of high quality, but also that education in practice is evaluated on quality and effectiveness.
For the development and promotion we collaborate with international organizations such as WONCA (family physicians), ICOH (occupational health experts), ILO, WHO, IAOH/OHTA (occupational hygienists), IEA (ergonomists) and ISSA (social security).
Sponsors and donations
The foundation Learning and Developing Occupational Health (LDOH) decided to offer this library free-of-charge to all involved. This facility is based on voluntary work. Nevertheless, we look for donations and sponsors to cover the costs for IT, administration and promotion.
This library has been funded in 2011 as the Workers’ Health Education library by the Coronel Institute of Occupational Health, a department of the Academic Medical Center of the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Support has been received from the WHO. The library has been taken over by the foundation LDOH in 2015. The website was off the air during about three years caused by a lack of funds needed to maintain the website. LDOH started a substantial renovation of the library in the second half of 2016. This resulted in the publishing of the new online library under the name Library of Education in Occupational Safety and Health in 2017.
Thank you to developers of online learning materials
Without committed experts who developed and edited quality lessons, modules and courses, and without institutions offering free access to that or for limited prices, this library would simply not exist. We know that it costs a tremendous lot of effort and sustained dedication to create such materials.