Indoor Air Quality: Employee Health

indoor air quality employee health

Are you seeing your employees suffering from severe health effects? Sick employees always require a review of your company’s employee health, indoor air quality, and safety protocols. Sick Building Syndrome, also known by the acronym of “SBS”. Includes people who are confined within a particular building for a long time. When they are exposed to various toxins within a particular building.

  • Most employee health and safety procedures address preventing injury due to hazardous working environments. However, the quality of the air that your employees’ breathe is now a modern-day occupational health concern. Becoming a primary concern in offices, retail stores, schools, and government buildings. Employee health problems are on the rise. The financial constraints make employers reluctant to compensate for the health issues of their employees. Under the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), employers have become concerned with rising medical costs. Only business owners with less than 50 employees are exempt from the provision of the health coverage plan. However, those businesses that have a large employee base will need to make sure they are doing what they can for their staff. They can help facilitate a happy and healthy workplace by incorporating an onsite health clinic through such companies as to keep on top of employee health if they need that assistance through their health insurance plan connected to the company.

How Indoor Air Quality Creates an Employee Health Hazard

Surprisingly, the cause of the modern-day occupational health hazard of sick building syndrome is largely unknown. However modern medicine is seeing a link to common toxins and those affected by sick building syndrome. One of the leading toxins people inhale in poor indoor quality is mold. The symptoms of sick building syndrome vary from patient to patient. However, the most common symptoms of headaches and respiratory problems are similar to the symptoms attributed to mold exposure. Many medical and indoor air quality professionals believe that sick building syndrome is from mold toxicity of “unseen mold problems“. Sick building illnesses lead to a stressful and unhealthy working environment for your employees or patrons. Companies incur enormous costs of dealing with the illnesses and resolving the source of the problem.

What Indoor Chemicals Could Cause an Occupational Health Hazard?

Now, here comes an interesting question! Most workplaces have chemicals in the air that are harmful to health. Therefore, prolonged exposure to those substances must be avoided. These chemicals include carbon monoxide, benzene, formaldehyde, nitrogen dioxide, naphthalene, radon, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon, trichloroethylene, and tetrachloroethylene. These chemicals cause indoor air quality pollution that is very harmful to human health. Several spots within a working building serve as sources of chemical contaminants. The byproducts from garbage, building exhaust, poorly located vents, and volatile organic compounds are no doubt, injurious to health.

How Ignoring Employee Health will Cost Your Business

It is imperative for businesses to take notice of the health problems of employees. Employees are a company’s biggest asset and protecting them is the responsibility of the employer. Workers’ compensation policies from the likes of ICW Group or similar insurance companies can help in this regard. In the event of an employee falling sick, such policies can help by providing wage replacement and medical benefits in exchange for relinquishment of the employee’s right to sue for negligence. However, avoiding employee health problems can lead to reduced productivity and will negatively impact the workplace environment. Also noticing employee health will identify problems within the organization’s building. Because mitigating mold problems before more employees get sick is a top priority. The top emphasis of employers should be on the wellbeing of the employees and every business owner should abide by the health and safety regulations laid down by the respective governments. Additionally, getting in touch with advisors from firms that can audit health and safety policies and provide training to the employees on health and safety management could help prevent legal troubles.

In industrialized areas where employees continue to breathe in carbon monoxide through the air vents from outside. Moreover, people smoking near the fresh-air-intake vents contribute to inhalation of second-hand smoke by the workers inside the building. Printers, fax machines, cleaning products and pesticides used within a building can result in ozone emission. Resulting in a health crisis of employees. Unexplained itching may be due to exposure to fibrous glass from the lining of air-duct. Throat irritation and continuous coughing may be due to improper or harsh carpet cleaners.

All of these factors contribute to a very unhealthy environment and puts your employees at risk. Mold growth can contribute to costly building repairs. Also, it can contribute towards business losses because of a negative health impact on customers, employees, and visitors. Unresolved or improperly resolved mold damage. Also leaves employers open for a civil suit. Due to the negligence towards the employee as well as the workplace, which can be extremely expensive down the road. Moreover, certified professionals should be brought in to identify the problems with the building. Also, provide timely solutions to prevent future health problems. Businesses should make every effort to take notice of recurring health problems. Thereby preventing a deteriorating workforce and a workplace.