This research will provide evidence of the extent of the problem of overweight and obesity within the NSW coal mining industry. It will provide information on the current situation with regards to the management of overweight and obesity within the NSW Coal Mining industry at a site level, with an understanding of what weight management initiatives have been trialled, how these have been received by employees, how they have been evaluated and measured and what outcomes have been achieved at a site level.
This research will provide valuable information about the challenges and benefits of current weight management initiatives within the NSW Coal Mining industry. This will inform implementation of appropriate programs, with a shift from an ad hoc site by site approach to engagement of key stakeholders in developing a coordinated, comprehensive, industry wide approach to the management of overweight and obesity in the future.
The expected results of the proposed project include a prognostic software package which can be used for the automatic mass diagnostic screening of chest X-ray radiographs to detect, evaluate and monitor pneumoconiosis. Given the black lung can continue to progress after coal dust exposure ceases and severe symptoms can emerge up to 15 years later, early detection and tracking the progress of pneumoconiosis are important for taking measures and precautions, and treating the complications caused by the disease. It is expected that the results produced from the proposed software package will be comparable to experienced radiologists, thus potentially hastening vital diagnosis and treatment capabilities.
By the end of the project we expect to:
To be able to quantify, through a targeted monitoring program, the levels of exposure to respirable dust and RCS that surface mineworkers could potentially be exposed to when conducting tasks already known to offer a higher risk profile. A very small percentage of annual statutory monitoring captures these activities and this targeted program will address this identified gap in our data and understanding. By partnering with CSH during this program, an enhanced and focused health surveillance system will result.
The research will determine whether currently utilised powered air purifying respirators (PAPRs) effectively filter out Diesel Particulate Matter and provide worker protection; by challenging PAPR filters used in mining workplaces with DPM; and by measuring the EC and the sizes of particles that are penetrating the filters to determine whether that poses an additional health risk for workers.
This investigation will: