Prompting change through reliable OPRA data

by | Dec 1, 2020 | OPRA | 0 comments

Dr T Hussain is a Consultant Occupational Physician. Here, he discusses the importance of data from schemes such as OPRA.

It is important that occupational physicians have reliable, valid and recognised data sources to refer to when they need information about occupational diseases.

The aim of the OPRA scheme is to provide a broad picture of occupational disease and work-related conditions in the UK. The OPRA scheme, and the other THOR schemes, are one of the first data sources that I refer to when I need information, particularly about respiratory or dermatological hazards in specific industries.

Practical occupational medicine is full of uncertainties; therefore having a reliable data source such as OPRA is invaluable in researching information about hazards.

I have also used information from the THOR schemes on a number of occasions to obtain data for the talks and presentations that I do. The information from the OPRA scheme allows me to present meaningful and reliable data to employers, employees and other occupational health and safety practitioners, regarding industry specific hazards.

This, I believe, gives me greater opportunity to influence and effect change in industry in order to protect the health of employees.

Physician-reported data sources such as OPRA are few and far between, and in my view provide more reliable data than self-reported schemes.

I am hopeful that the information that I and others report to the OPRA scheme will not only allow me to do my job better, but nationally will help to drive risk management programmes (through the HSE) to areas where interventions are needed most.

I feel it is my duty as a diligent and conscientious occupational physician to report to OPRA as accurately and as consistently as possible.

Find out more about the OPRA reporting scheme.