Details of research activities of the SSAWC Working Group are provided below.
SUN SAFETY AT WORK CANADA (SSAWC) PROJECT
Publications resulting from the SSAWC project include the following:
Peters, C.E., Pasko, E., Strahlendorf, P., Holness, D.L., Tenkate, T. Solar ultraviolet radiation exposure among outdoor workers in three Canadian provinces. Annals of Work Exposures and Health 2019; 63(6): 679-688
Haynes, E., Kramer, D.M., Holness, D.L., Strahlendorf, P., Tenkate, T. With a little help from my friends: elements of successful integrated knowledge translation collaborative partnerships from three workplace-based occupational disease research projects. Work 2019; 62(2): 261-278
Haynes, E., Kramer, D.M., Strahlendorf, P., Holness, D.L., Kushner, R., Tenkate, T. A cross-Canada knowledge transfer and exchange workplace intervention targeting the adoption of sun safety programs and practices: Sun Safety at Work Canada. Safety Science 2018; 102: 238-250.
Kramer, D., Haynes, E., Holness, D.L., Strahlendorf, P., Kushner, R., Tenkate, T. Sun Safety at Work Canada: Baseline evaluation of outdoor workplaces recruited to participate in a sun safety knowledge transfer and exchange intervention. Safety Science 2017; 96: 172-182.
Kramer, D.M., Tenkate, T., Strahlendorf, P., Kushner, R., Gardner, A., Holness, D.L. Sun Safety at Work Canada: a multiple case study protocol to develop sun and heat safety programs and policies for outdoor workers. Implementation Science 2015; 10:97.
Tenkate, T. 12 ways to protect workers from the sun. Canadian Occupational Safety, Published on-line on May 6, 2019.
Tenkate, T. and Kushner, R. Outdoor workers exposed to dangerous solar radiation. Canadian Occupational Safety, August 18, 2015.
SOLAR UVR EXPOSURE AMOUNG OUDOOR WORKERS IN ABERTA
Despite the significant health and economic impacts of workplace exposure to solar UVR, occupational exposure measurements in most provinces, including Alberta, are not available. To help address this gap, CAREX Canada launched a study with support from Sun Safety at Work Canada working group partners, we answered:
1) What are the typical full-day solar radiation exposure levels for outdoor workers in Alberta, and what personal, work, or environmental factors lead to higher levels?
Through solar UVR sampling, we found that:
Outdoor workers in Alberta may be at considerable risk of solar UVR exposure in the summer months.
Almost half of the workers were exposed to levels that exceeded the international occupational exposure limit guideline, and some workers were exposed to levels 13 times the international guideline.
Those who worked outside for more hours or on sunny and mixed sunny/cloudy days were more likely to have higher daily doses.
2) What sun protection behaviours are being used by outdoor workers at work and leisure in Alberta?
Through worker surveys, we found that:
Outdoor workers were more likely to practice sun protection behaviours at work than at leisure.
At work, workers were more likely to wear protective clothing, hats, and sunscreen, but at leisure, they were more likely to seek shade.
As the number of hours spent outdoors at work and leisure increased, sun protection also increased.
3) What are the best practices for creating a sun exposure and skin cancer surveillance system for outdoor workers in Alberta?
By conducting a literature review and interviewing key informants, we found that:
There are few examples worldwide of jurisdictions that have surveillance systems in place to support the exposure and NMSC risk reduction in this vulnerable worker population.
Key barriers for designing and implementing an occupational surveillance program in Canada include underreporting/under-participation and a lack of funding and awareness.
Key facilitators include communication/collaboration, a simple reporting process, and long-term funding.
For more information, please refer to the CAREX Canada website
Rydz E, Harper A, Leong B, Arrandale VH, Kalia S, Forsman-Phillips L, Holness DL, Tenktate, T, Peters CE. “Solar ultraviolet radiation exposure among outdoor workers in Alberta, Canada.” Environ Res 2020:109902.
Rydz E, Harper A, Leong B, Arrandale VH, Kalia S, Forsman-Phillips L, Holness DL, Tenkate T, Peters CE. “Sun Protection Use at Work and Leisure by Outdoor Workers in Alberta, Canada.” J Occup Environ Med 2020; doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000002133.
Study team and funder
Principal Investigator: Dr. Cheryl Peters
Co-Investigators: Dr. Victoria Arrandale, Dr. Sunil Kalia, Dr. Thomas Tenkate, Dr. Linn Holness
Collaborators: Ms. Lindsay Forsman-Phillips, Mr. Steve Quantz, Ms. Judith Purcell, Ms. Brenda Marsh, Ms. Nicole Braun, Mr. Merrill O’Donnell
Funder: Alberta Ministry of Labour and Immigration
SUN SAFETY MESSAGING FOR OUTDOOR WORKERS
Canadian researchers and dermatologists have developed sun safety messages for public health purposes, but these recommendations are often not feasible for outdoor workers to follow. The objective of this research is to develop a set of practical sun safety messages that will work for outdoor workers and their employers.
To accomplish this, the research team will consult with experts, collect information about sun safety messages for outdoor workers worldwide, and speak to outdoor workers, health and safety professionals, and employers to better understand what they need in terms of sun safety messages. Findings will be synthesized and presented in a workshop (including outdoor workers, industry and labour experts, dermatologists, and researchers), as well as during one-on-one focused interviews with stakeholders to achieve consensus on what exactly these messages need to convey. By creating practical, tailored sun safety messages for outdoor workers, this project aims to increase sun protective behaviours among outdoor workers and subsequently, to reduce the burden of solar UVR-related occupational disease.
This project is ongoing and results will be shared when available, tentatively in the summer of 2021.
Study team and funder
Principal Investigator: Dr. Cheryl Peters
Co-Investigators: Ms. Nicole Braun, Ms. Lindsay Forsman-Phillips, Dr. Thomas Tenkate
INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATIONS & OTHER PROJECT PUBLICATIONS
- The effect of occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation on malignant skin melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis from the WHO/ILO Joint Estimates of the Work-related Burden of Disease and Injury. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2021. ISBN 978-92-4-004083-0
- Modifi, A., Tompa, E., Song, C., Tenkate, T., Arrandale, V., Jardine, K., Davies, H., Demers, P.A. Economic evaluation of interventions to reduce solar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) exposure among construction workers. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene 2021, 18(6): 250-264
- Loney, T., Paulo, M.S., Modenese, A., Gobba, F., Tenkate, T., Whiteman, D.C., Green, A.C., John, S.M. Global evidence on occupational sun exposure and keratinocyte cancers. British Journal of Dermatology 2021, 184:208-218
- Peters, C.E., Tenkate, T., Heer, E., O’Reilly, R., Kalia, S., Koehoorn, M. Strategic task and break timing to reduce ultraviolet radiation exposure in outdoor workers. Frontiers in Public Health 2020; 8: 354
- Reimann, J., McWhirter, J.E., Papadopoulos, A., Bergeron, K., Flynn, S., Marrett, L., Tenkate, T., Rosen, C.F., Dewey, C. A process evaluation of the Skin Cancer Prevention Act (Tanning Beds): a survey of Ontario Public Health Units. Journal of Community Health 2019; 44(4): 675-683
- Silva Paulo, M., Adam, B., Akagwu, C., Akparibo, I., Al-Rifai, R.H., Bazrafshan, S., Gobba, F., Green, A.C., Ivanov, I., Kezic, S., Leppink, N., Loney, T., Modenese, A., Pega, F., Peters, C.E., Prüss-Üstün, A., Tenkate, T., Ujita, Y., Wittlich, M., John, S.M. Parameters for estimating the national and global burden of melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer attributable to occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation: Protocol for a systematic review of occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation and a systematic review and meta-analysis of the effect of occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation on melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancer. Environment International 2019; 126: 804-815
- Tenkate, T., Silva Paulo, M., Adam, B., Al-Rifai, R.H., Chou, B.R., Gobba, F., Ivanov, I., Leppink, N., Loney, T., Pega, F., Peters, C.E., Prüss-Üstün, A., Ujita, Y., Wittlich, M., Modenese, A. Parameters for estimating the national and global burden of cataract attributable to occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation: Protocol for a systematic review of occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation and a systematic review and meta-analysis of the effect of occupational exposure to solar ultraviolet radiation on cataract. Environment International 2019; 125: 542-553
- Nadalin V., Marrett, L., Cawley, C., Atkinson, J., Tenkate, T., McWhirter, J., Rosen, C.F. Assessing a ban on the use of UV tanning devices among adolescents in Ontario, Canada: First year results. Canadian Journal of Public Health 2018; 109:473-479
- Tenkate, T.D. Ocular UVR exposure of welders. Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health 2017; 43(3): 287-288
- Sendall, M.C., Stoneham, M., Crane, P., Fleming, M-L., Graves, N., Janda, M., Tenkate, T., Youl, P., Kimlin, M. Outdoor workers and sun protection strategies: two case study examples in Queensland, Australia. Rural and Remote Health (Internet) 2016; 16: 3558
- Rye, S., Janda, M., Stoneham, M., Crane, P., Sendall, M., Youl, P., Tenkate, T., Baldwin, L., Perina, H., Finch, L. & Kimlin, M. Changes in outdoor workers sun-related attitudes, beliefs and behaviours: a pre-post workplace intervention. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2014; 56(9): e62-e72
- Janda, M., Stoneham, M., Youl, P., Crane, P., Sendall, M.C., Tenkate, T. & Kimlin, M. What encourages sun protection among outdoor workers from four industries? Journal of Occupational Health 2014; 56: 62-72
- Horsham, C., Auster, J., Sendall, M.C., Stoneham, M., Youl, P., Crane, P., Tenkate, T., Janda, M. & Kimlin, M. Interventions to decrease skin cancer risk in outdoor workers: update of a 2007 systematic review. BMC Research Notes 2014; 7:10