Attending the seminar were researchers working in OSH field and representatives from the authorities such as Vietnam Confederation of Labour (VGCL), Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), National Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health (NIOEH), Vietnam Social Insurance, etc.
Ethylbenzene is a homologue of benzene, a colorless liquid like gasoline, sweet smell, quick evaporating and flammable. Ethylbenzene is an organic compound that plays an important role in the petrochemical industry. Ethylbenzene is used to make other chemicals, in flues and as a solvent in printing inks, rubber-based adhesives, varnishes and paints. Ethylbenzene affects hearing, causes nerve-function impairment and affects kidneys, etc. Currently, occupational Ethylbenzene poisoning disease has been recognized by many countries in the world.
Within the agenda of the seminar, participants had heard an overview report on Ethylbenzene including basic information on Ethylbenzene, effects of Ethylbenzene on health, Ethylbenzene exposure monitoring, guidelines on medical examinations of occupational Ethylbenzene poisoning disease. At the same time, listened to reports on the basic proposals and drafts of guidelines on diagnosis and appraisal of occupational Ethylbenzene poisoning disease including the basis for the proposal to add occupational Ethylbenzene poisoning disease to the list of insured occupational diseases in Vietnam, draft diagnosis guidelines, draft appraisal guidelines.
After two reports presented by the researchers of the VNNIOSH, there were many comments and suggestions. All these comments agreed that the proposal of addition of occupational Ethylbenzene poisoning disease to the list of insured occupational diseases in Vietnam is necessary and urgent in the period of promoting production in the country recently.
Some comments suggested VNNIOSH should focus on research, adjustment and completement the application for adding to the list of insured occupational diseases which considering the suitability to the condition of Vietnam such as each country has its own industries, occupations, production technologies; different working conditions and working environment; facilities and equipment for analysis and evaluation are still lacking and weaker in Vietnam than many other countries, etc.
Besides, VNNIOSH should also analyse and list typical industries that use a lot of Ethylbenzene in production, then give the (estimated) figure of the amount of Ethylbenzene used in Vietnam in the past few years; the driscription of the proposal should be more convincing by stating the standard parameters of countries, international organizations at the same time based on the actual research situation to make arguments for the proposal of VNNIOSH; adding the occupational exposure limits in the environment.
Along with that VNNIOSH needs to consider the benefits for people suffering from occupational diseases, thereby calculating the impact on social insurance fund; it is necessary to speed up the time to complete the application for additional covered occupational disease in order to keep up with the upcoming addition of Circular 15/2016/TT-BYT of the Ministry of Health on the list of occupational diseases entitled to social insurance.
At the end of the seminar, Dr Vu Xuan Trung, Deputy Director General of VNNIOSH thanked the presence and contributions of the experts, scientists and managers and hoped continue to receive further contributions for the institute to complete the application for additional covered occupational disease, contribute to the protection of worker’s rights and heatlh.