Title

Occupational safety and work-related injury control efforts in qatar: Lessons learned from a rapidly developing economy

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

9-2-2020

Journal

International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

Volume

17

Issue

18

DOI

10.3390/ijerph17186906

Keywords

Injury prevention; Middle East; Migrant workers; Occupational injuries; Qatar; Work-related injury

Abstract

© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Work-related injury (WRI) control is an integral part of occupational safety. In rapidly developing Gulf countries such as Qatar with a predominantly expatriate workforce, WRI control is a complex issue often seen in conjunction with the implementation of labour laws and labour rights. We aimed to implement a public health approach to facilitate efforts to achieve long-term WRI control in Qatar. A range of initiatives helped to gain visibility and momentum for this important public health problem, including identifying and engaging with key stakeholders, workers’ surveys, steps to establish a unified injury database, and the implementation of a WRI identification tool in the electronic medical records. A contemporaneous improved enforcement of existent occupational safety regulations through heightened worksite inspections and efforts to improve living conditions for migrant workers also took place. WRIs are not only a Qatar-specific problem; the same issues are faced by neighbouring Gulf countries and other rapidly developing economies with large expatriate worker populations. These strategies are also useful starting points for similar countries interested in nurturing a safe, healthy and productive workforce.

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