Digitization of occupational safety and health, a necessity in the context of COVID-19



The crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is putting pressure on employers and workers, who are forced to implement new procedures and work practices in a short period of time, one of the directions being the digitization of occupational safety and health.

In this context, on May 14, the first online seminar on Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) in Romania was organized with the theme “Digitization of occupational safety and health, a necessity in the context of COVID-19″. Its organizers, the platform, aimed to bring to the attention of entrepreneurs and specialists in this field solutions on how to organize and carry out the activity.

The seminar was attended by Georgiana Nicolescu, Manager of focal point of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), Romanian branch, Niculae Voinoiu, Director of the Directorate for Safety and Health Control at Work within the Romanian Labor Inspectorate, Petrică Mureșan, CEO of the  platform, Cristina Monica Andrei, Project Manager / IT Consultant at the European Commission, Adrian Ispășoiu, President of the Romanian Association for Occupational Safety and Health, Georgiana Andrei, Corporate Sales Director at the Private Health Network “REGINA MARIA ”and Dr. Gabriel Gurguță, infectious disease specialist at“ REGINA MARIA ”. At the same time, the seminar was attended by Elena Carchilan, head of the Labor Inspectorate of Trade Unions (IMS) within the National Trade Union Confederation of Moldova.

Participants discussed about occupational safety and health measures that should provide practical support to employers and workers, with appropriate prevention, which will help them return to work in safe and healthy conditions in order to prevent the transmission of COVID-19.

The main challenge related to the digitalization of OSH activity refers to the fact that the legislation of several European states, including the Republic of Moldova, does not provide a mechanism for conducting OSH training in the online environment. At the same time, there are many ambiguities regarding telework (the form of work organization in the fields of activity in which it is possible to perform it, through which the employee fulfills his duties specific to the position, qualification or profession he holds, other than the place of work organized by the employer), electronic registers, data confidentiality.

Elena Carchilan argues that as in normal working conditions, in the context of measures to combat COVID-19, the identification and assessment of risks in both physical and psychosocial work environments is the starting point for OSH management. “When the work process changes, employers are obliged to review their risk assessment and take into account all risks, including those affecting mental health. In this process, attention must be paid to all anomalies or situations that cause problems, “said Elena Carchilan.

Also, those present addressed issues related to the need to digitize OSH activity from the perspective of the European Commission and were acquainted with the efforts of EU institutions in this regard, examined proposals on the organization of the professional body in the field of Safety and Health at Work and the provisions included in the Guide of good practices and preventive measures for the protection of employees developed by EU-OSHA. All those who wants to know more about the topics discussed at the seminar can access this link.

Department of mass-media and international relations of CNSM

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