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AAOHN J. 2011 Mar;59(3):111-7. doi: 10.3928/08910162-20110223-01.

Indoor air problems in hospitals: a challenge for occupational health.

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Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Helsinki, Finland.


Indoor air problems, caused by moisture damage and limited ventilation, have been detected in Finnish hospital buildings. A recent survey found that hospital personnel experience indoor air-related symptoms more often than office workers. The aim of this study was to assess the role, capabilities, and methods of hospital occupational health professionals in handling indoor air problems. Data were generated through semi-structured interviews. Representatives of occupational health, occupational safety, and infection control were interviewed in seven central hospitals. The data were analyzed using qualitative methods. According to interviewed professionals, indoor air problems are difficult to tackle. The evaluation of health risks and risk communication were considered particularly difficult. A uniform action model for resolving indoor air problems should be created. An interprofessional indoor air group to handle indoor air problems should be created in all hospitals.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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