Mountains in the Chaning World, Mountains in the Chaning World

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Dipa Katuwal, Sujan Babu Marahatta

Last modified: 2017-09-08


Waste handler works entail removing of debris from streets, collecting solid waste, disposing and recycling waste material. In contrast to developed countries, in developing countries like Nepal; waste handlers collects the waste manually. Manual waste collection service is associated with danger therefore, municipal waste handler are exposed to occupational health related problems from waste materials and physical effort they exert in waste handling. Despite the severity of occupational health hazards encounter by solid waste collectors their provision, knowledge and usage of personnel protective equipment is low and there is no adequate and reliable evidence on occupational health risks of solid waste collectors in Nepal. Therefore, this study was aimed to assess the knowledge of waste collectors on occupational health and safety practices and its association with utilization of PPEs along with condition of occupational health problems and injuries and factors associated with them. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 355 solid waste collectors. The data was collected by using semi-structured questionnaire, which was completed from March 2016 to May 2016. The data was entered into SPSS 20 version for analysis. Chi-squared test had been performed to see the presence of association between the dependent and selected independent variables. The response rate of this study was 100%. Female respondents accounted 61%. Among total respondents surveyed 51.5% of the respondents said that they have got knowledge on occupational health hazard, 16.1 % know how to prevent themselves from work related health risks , 29% know about PPEs and  31.5% know how to use PPEs. About 45.8% of the study participants had practices of the utilization of PPEs. Most (63.7%) reported that they were suffering from occupational health problems like muscular-skeletal problems (54%), Allergies (15.5%), Respiratory problems (13.8%), others (11.9%) like headache and fever and Gastro- intestinal problems (5.75%). Majority of respondents (74.6%) reported that they were not suffering from any type of work related injuries. there was significant association between knowledge on occupational health hazard & safety practices and PPE utilization. Similarly, variables which had significant influence on the occupational health problems were knowledge on occupational health hazard (P= 0.016), work experience (P= 0.021), Health Checkup (P= 0.042) and for the occupational health injuries were monthly income(P=0.036), knowledge to prevent from health risk (P=0.001), gender (P=0.02), and knowledge on occupational health hazard (P= 0.011), work experience (P= 0.025) , work type (P= 0.001), knowledge on PPEs ( P= 0.034) and knowledge on work related health risks(P= 0.027).

Key words:  Nepal, Occupational health issues, Personal Protection Equipment’s (PPEs), Waste handlers

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