September 3-6 Marks the First Annual Respiratory Protection Week

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Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers discuss occupational respiratory illnesses. Each year for the past eight years, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has held a respiratory awareness event on September 5. The event, called N95 Day, highlights the importance of using N95s, disposable masks that cover the nose and mouth, which prevents the wearer from breathing in hazardous substances. The NIOSH is expanding the N95 Day event to kick off the first annual Respiratory Protection Week, which will occur the first week of September. This milestone event will review the history of respiratory protection and highlight some of the current work that is being done to protect employees. The event will include online poster sessions and webinars hosted by NIOSH. There will also be discussions about new research and products.

The first annual Respiratory Protection Week begins with presentations from members of the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses (AORN) and the Association of Occupational Health Professional in Healthcare (AOHP). Representatives will discuss the latest research on Powered Air Purifying Respirator (PAPR) in healthcare, particularly as it relates to challenges in the operating room. AORN has approved the activities as continuing education for registered nurses. Attendees will have the opportunity to listen to the following three presentations:

  • Overview of Powered Air-Purifying Respirators
  • Use of PAPRs in the OR
  • Respiratory Protection Resources: Where to go for help?

Workers at Risk for Respiratory Illnesses

Employees who work in any type of industrial sector are often exposed to toxic substances, putting them at an increased risk for developing a range of respiratory illnesses. The following are examples of workers who are at a higher risk of exposure to respirable toxins:

  • Construction workers
  • Farmers
  • Firefighters
  • Healthcare workers
  • Janitors
  • Maritime workers
  • Mechanics
  • Miners
  • Painters

Workers who are exposed to toxic respirable materials are at an increased risk for developing serious occupational illnesses and lung disease. The seriousness of the illness depends on a number of factors, including the type of work that an employee does, the type of toxic material that was inhaled, and the area in the lung where the toxic substance settled. The following are examples of respiratory illnesses that are caused by toxic respirable materials:

  • Allergies
  • Asbestos
  • Asthma
  • Bronchiolitis
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Influenza
  • Lung cancer
  • Mesothelioma
  • Pneumoconiosis
  • Silicosis
  • Tuberculosis

Fortunately, many of these illnesses can be prevented by using the appropriate protective safety gear, which employers have a responsibility to provide. Workers should also be provided with specific safety training as it relates to their job, particularly if they are exposed to airborne toxins. If a worker believes their rights have been violated, or their safety has been jeopardized, he or she should contact a qualified Workers’ Compensation lawyer.

Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Represent Workers with Occupational Respiratory Illnesses

If you have developed a respiratory illness after being exposed to respirable toxins at work, it is in your best interest to contact the Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton at your earliest convenience. We will examine the details of your case and recommend the best legal course of action. Our skilled and experienced team will guide you through every step of the claims process and ensure that you receive the maximum financial compensation you deserve. To schedule a free, confidential consultation, call us today at 844-556-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.