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NHLS

The National Institute for Occupational Health (NIOH) is South Africa s major centre for occupational health development, training, service support and research and has been in existence since 1946. The NIOH is a national institute within the National Health Laboratory Service (NHLS) and is a member of the global network of World Health Organisation Collaborating Centres (WHO CC) for Occupational Health and the ILO-CIS (International Labour Organisation) network for Workers Health. The NHLS is a public entity reporting to the Minister of Health. The NIOH has contributed to the WHO Global Plan of Action (GPA) on Worker s Health (2009 2012) and is actively participating in the new GPA (2012 2017). It also maintains formal relationships with the Finnish Institute for Occupational Health (FIOH), the Health and Safety Laboratories in the UK (HSL), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health in the USA (NIOSH), the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in the Hague (OPCW), the International Association of Cancer Registries (IACR) in France, the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna (IAEA). NIOH also has extensive local and regional links with medical schools and universities of technology. It actively participates in various national and international fora through the exchange of health professionals and medical scientists and joint research and training programmes.

The NIOH provides services to the public (national, provincial and local government), NGO and private sectors and is uniquely positioned as the sole provider of highly specialised laboratory services in South Africa for occupational health. These include:

  •  Expertise in developing policy, systems and programmes for occupational health and safety

  •  Provision of a referral medical service for workers staffed by occupational health medicine specialists and nurses

  •  Conducting of ergonomic assessments of workplaces and individuals

  •  Delivery of programmes for HIV/TB in the workplace

  •  Conducting worker assessments through pre-employment, periodic, return to work, exit and special

    medical examinations

  •  Provision of an extensive range of accredited laboratory services covering analytic chemistry,

    microbiology and immunology, pathology and toxicology

  •  Conducting health risk assessments and occupational hygiene measurements

  •  Advising on environmental and public health issues

  •  Provision of cancer related risk and advice on cancer control interventions

  •  Conducting health technology assessments

  •  Implementation and support for a state-of-the-art occupational health information system covering

    occupational medicine (individual employee assessments), safety assessments and incident investigations

    and reports

  •  An extensive occupational health information service covering dissemination of OH materials, online

    journals and training materials

  •  Ability to partner with other specialists in safety, health and the environment across South Africa and

    internationally through the WHO Collaborating Centres Network and the ILO. In caLIBRate, NIOH will contribute to WP2 Human risk assessment models.