Perceived Occupational Hazards of Sanitary Inspectors from Two Urban Cities in the Philippines

Anne Clarisse C. Carlos,1 Rose Abigail D. Enoveso,1 Maria Lelis E. Palmares,1
Lorra Angelia dC. Sayson,1 Kim Patrick S. Tejano1 and Gayline F. Manalang Jr.2

1 Bachelor of Science in Public Health, College of Public Health,
University of the Philippines Manila
2 Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, College of Public Health,
University of the Philippines Manila

 

Objective. This study aimed to describe the occupational hazards perceived by sanitary inspectors (SIs) from the City of Manila (Manila) and Quezon City (QC) as they perform their adminstrative and technical roles.

Methods. Hazards and control measures were identified using self-administered questionnaires distributed among SIs of Manila and QC from November to December 2010.

Results. The most frequently perceived hazards are slips, trips and falls, and verbal assault seen consistently present among 8 our of 9 roles. Harsh climatic condition on the other hand is the hazard perceived to be the riskiest as seen consistently in 8 out of 9 roles. Of the respondents, 28% did not receive formal training in the field of sanitary inspection and 64% did not have work shifts as adminstrative control measures; 90% said that personal protective equipment (PPE) were not made available to them and were not used by them.

Conclusion and Recommendations. The most frequently perceived hazards encountered by SIs are slips, trips and falls, harsh climatic conditions, unwarranted complaints, and verbal assault. On the other hand, harsh climatic conditions, unwarranted complaints, and slips, trips and falls are the occupational hazards which are consistently present and perceived to pose the most risk in more than five roles. Provision of PPE and improvement in the implementation of administrative control measures is recommended. Moreover, further studies involving SIs' actual experiences, SIs from rural areas an control measures present in the workplace are suggested.

Key Words: occupational hazards, sanitary inspectors, control measures, personal protective equipment