Oregon campaign to prevent falls in construction

L to R: Harvey McGill (PNW OSHA Education Center), Cecil Tipton, (Oregon Area Director, OSHA), David Douglas, Dan Daley and Russ Nicolai

L to R: Harvey McGill (PNW OSHA Education Center), Cecil Tipton, (Oregon Area Director, OSHA), David Douglas, Dan Daley and Russ Nicolai

On May 6 there were 60+ attendees at the Portland, Oregon Stand-Down event.  A few truly went the distance and traveled from Idaho and Washington.  Several local organizations (see April 29 blog) began collaborating in January to ensure an effective campaign during 2016 National Safety Stand-down week (May 2-6).  These partners, among many things, arranged for advertising on metro buses, presentations at safety meetings, distributed resources to association members, apprenticeship programs, and workers compensation safety consultants.  The May 6 event was a culmination of all the activities that the partners initiated for and during the week.

Special thanks to industry experts, Dan Daley (Daley Construction), Russ Nicolai (Snyder, roofing contractor), and David Douglas (Fred Shearer & Sons) for their presentations.  Several attendees noted that their discussions on personal experience, commitment and passion were extremely valuable.

Russ Nicolai and attendees

Russ Nicolai and attendees

Harvey facilitating panel discussion

Harvey facilitating panel discussion



Connecting at work


Institute Staff enjoy a sunny lunch.

When I first started working here at OHSU it took me awhile to adjust to an academic research environment. Research, like some other industries, is sometimes stereotyped as made up of a workforce focused more on working solo than engaging socially: Work that can’t be bothered by coffee breaks or “chatting around the water cooler.”

Of course, what we know to be true is how we feel about the teams we work with really does affect our health, well-being, productivity and turnover!  And while we all have days with our nose to the grindstone as we eat while at our computer or dodge in early and avoid the chit chat of others; we also now encourage coworkers to take the time to be part of our team. Some days a few of us might walk the few minutes together to grab that morning tea or coffee. And other days – not everyday perhaps – we take a few minutes to sit in the sun while we eat our lunch, sharing both pleasure and business.

I’m sure now, the days that I get away from my work for that time – be it 5 or 20 minutes – enhances all aspects of me, my well-being, and my ability to be successful in what I do.

What about you and your work team? What are you doing to support your workplace relationships? We’d love to know!



Dr. Saurabh Thosar earns first place at Research Week

SaurabhWe congratulate our colleague, Saurabh Thosar, who was selected as the first place winner among postdoc oral presentations at OHSU’s annual Research Week.  Dr. Thosar’s presentation was titled Endogenous circadian rhythm in vascular function and cardiovascular risk.

Research Week 2016 consisted of four days full of events and activities celebrating the research taking place at OHSU with more than 400 participants. Dr. Saurabh supports the Shea Lab, here at Occupational Health Sciences, which investigates the effect of circadian rhythms and sleep disorders on human disease.

Learn more about Research Week. Learn more about the Shea Lab.

OccHealthSci Topic: Sleep and Shiftwork

OHSU Research Week, May 2-5

OHSU Research Week is a university-wide event that celebrates the excellence of research performed across all schools, centers, institutes (including OccHealthSci), and education programs at OHSU. It is a unique opportunity for scientists to get out of the lab or clinic and meet colleagues from various disciplines to share the fruits of their research. Here are some photos of Occupational Health Sciences faculty, staff and laboratory personnel, who presented their research findings at Monday afternoon’s poster session. You can view a complete listing of Research Week activities here.

Poster Session Overview

Poster Session Overview

Kent Anger, PhD and Jason Yano, BA

Kent Anger, PhD and Jason Yano, BA


Wylie Wan, PhD, David Robinson, OHSU Executive Vice Provost, and Leslie Hammer, PhD


Jason Yano discusses his research with Occupational Health Sciences Director, Steven Shea and Associate Director, Kent Anger


Wylie Wan, PhD and David Robinson, OHSU Vice-Provost

Matt Gieger, Ryan Opel of Dr. Miranda Lim's laboratory

Matt Gieger, Ryan Opel of Dr. Miranda Lim’s laboratory

Matt Butler, PhD, Saurabh Thosar, PhD

Wylie Wan, PhD, Matt Butler, PhD, Saurabh Thosar, PhD

Loren Habitz, PhD and Chuck Allen, PhD

Katie Vaughn, Anjali-Rameshbabu, PhD, Jason-Yano, BA and Kent Anger, PhD

Katie Vaughn, Anjali-Rameshbabu, PhD, Jason-Yano, BA and Kent Anger, PhD

National Safety Stand-Down

save the date with logos reduced

It will be the 3rd year for the National Safety Stand-Down to prevent falls in construction.  The emphasis began 5 years ago with the Construction Fall Prevention Campaign.  Partners in the campaign include OSHA, NIOSH, CPWR and the NORA Construction Sector Council.  This year the Safety Stand-Down will be held during the week of May 2-6.  Employers are asked to participate by setting aside time during the week to have an open discussion with their workers about falls and how to prevent them.  Falls remain the leading cause of death in construction.  In 2014, there were 337 fall fatalities out of 874 total fatalities in construction.  Those deaths were preventable.  

Last year, nearly 2.5 million construction employers and workers took part in stand-downs in all 50 states and internationally.  This year, the goal is to involve 5 million employers and workers in stand-downs.  Meeting this goal would have a huge impact on raising awareness of the falls issue and ensuring workers return safely home to families every day.
Please help promote the fall prevention campaign and the Stand-Down by raising awareness among employers and workers about fall hazards, and by providing information they can use to prevent injury and death.  By helping us reach employers and raising awareness about the hazards of falls from ladders, scaffolds and roofs, you will be part of a concerted effort throughout the nation to reduce the number of deaths and injuries that result from falls.

2016 Stand-down poster on bus
New resources have been developed for the Stand-Down including a mobile app (search for “safety stand down” in our mobile app store).  Other resources can be found on the Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down webpage and the Campaign webpage.  Employers can receive formal recognition for participating in the event if they complete an online questionnaire and print their “Certificate of Participation.” Information about the Campaign and the Stand-Down is available on the other official web sites CPWR and NIOSH and Oregon FACE .

Partners in Oregon and Washington have collaborated to help promote this event.  On May 6 a free class on “Fall Hazard Awareness in Construction” will be offered in Portland.  You may have seen the ads on the buses. To register for the class click h
.  Class size is limited so register soon.

Oregon Workers Memorial Day


Start the Conversation: New supervisor tool released


It may seem like a no-brainer that employers should give all new workers safety training. For example, it would be outrageous for someone to walk onto a flight and announce, “Good evening folks, I’m going to be your pilot today and it’s my first flight ever, so please buckle your seatbelts, sit back and enjoy the ride.”

Research, however, shows as many as 80% of young workers don’t receive safety training. Despite the many positive attributes of young workers they often lack the same level of experience and skill that older workers possess, attributes which can be an advantage in maintaining safety at work. In fact, young workers are twice as likely to be injured on the job than their older counterparts, a statistic that highlights the importance of young worker safety training efforts.

To address this need, the translational research project called Promoting U through Safety and Health (PUSH) combined the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health’s (NIOSH) existing classroom-based safety curriculum with health topics into an online training designed specifically for young workers. The specialized training uses videos, images, and real-life examples to demonstrate the importance of workplace safety and methods for staying safe on the job. In 2013 the training was evaluated with young employees of Portland Parks and Recreation. Durable changes in knowledge were observed over a three-month period.

However, workplace safety requires a multi-level approach that recognizes and emphasizes the role of the employer in keeping all workers safe. In addition to the training, a series of supervisor-led activities were developed to help young workers and supervisors have discussions about safety, health and communication on the worksite. The Start the Conversation activities expand on topics addressed in the PUSH training and facilitate the development of an open path of communication between young workers and their supervisors. Activities like “Workplace Hazards” helps make a concept like identifying hazards in the workplace relevant and engaging. In this activity, young workers and supervisors identify hazards in their workplace and brainstorm ways to make the job safer.

The 21 Start the Conversation scripted activities are now on the web and can be downloaded for free at www.promotingusafetyhealth.com. Each activity can be completed with two or more young workers and range in length from about 10-20 minutes.

Submitted by Megan Parish, Research Associate, Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences, Oregon Healthy Workforce Center

Image retrieved for free from: https://pixabay.com/en/aircraft-cabin-cockpit-aircraft-1229498/

Parkrose High captures 2016 O[yes] video prizes

First and second prize winners from Parkrose High with their video arts teacher.

First and second prize winners from Parkrose High with their video arts teacher.

We congratulate students from Portland’s Parkrose High School for claiming both 1st and 2nd prizes for videos entered into the O[yes] video contest!

The goal of this annual video contest, organized by O[yes] – the Oregon Young Employee Safety Coalition – is to inspire teens to stay safe at work with the theme of “Speak up. Work safe.” Videos, produced by Oregon high school students, are judged on creativity, production value, youth appeal, and overall safety and health message. O[yes] and its partners and followers use the videos to promote safety to a vast range of audiences.

First place ($500) (with matching check to Parkrose High)
“Voices in My Head”
Producer/director: Leah Coyle
Actors: Keely Byerley (senior), Coyle, Salena Garver (senior), Matt Tremblay (senior)
Editors: Coyle, Garver

Second place ($400) (with matching check to Parkrose High)
Producer/director: Rae Millard
Script: Mitchel Hummel (junior)
Actors: Millard, Sophia Swim (junior), Janos Wilson (sophomore)
Camera: Thomas Poupore (junior)
Editor: Millard

O[yes] thanks all of the contest sponsors: the Oregon Institute of Occupational Health Sciences at OHSU, Oregon OSHA, SAIF Corporation, local Oregon chapters of the American Society of Safety Engineers, the SHARP Alliance, the Central Oregon Safety & Health Association, SafeBuild Alliance, Hoffman Construction, and Construction Safety Summit.

Watch the videos now on YouTube: Voices in My Head and #47. Read the press release.

OccHealthSci topic page: Young Workers


Student intern to attend ISEF

Stuti Garg presenting at the 2016 Northwest Science Expo

Each year, high school students are invited to conduct research as interns under the close guidance of Institute faculty. High schooler Stuti Garg conducted research in the laboratory of Amanda McCullough and Stephen Lloyd, and presented her work at the 2016 Northwest Science Expo. And the result – Stuti’s work was selected for a finalist position at the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF)! Here is what Stuti says about her experience:

This past year, I had the incredible opportunity to work in the Lloyd & McCullough lab at OHSU. Conducting research in the lab was unlike any other experience I have had. Under their mentorship, I was able to develop an exciting project, investigating DNA repair enzymes in E. coli cells. I presented my project to judges at the Northwest Science Expo (NWSE), held at Portland State University, competing against the top projects throughout the state. The fair was filled with novel innovations, from lung cancer detection algorithms, to high-tech microwaves. Being in the presence of such incredible discoveries was definitely a humbling experience. I received a finalist position for ISEF, which was given to the top 6 projects at the state fair. The comments from the judges were very supportive, and encouraged me to pursue my passion for the medical sciences. It is an honor to be able to compete in the international competition, and I would like to thank my mentors for supporting me throughout the process. I cannot wait to present my findings to the judges in Phoenix!

Congratulations to Stuti and to the Lloyd and McCullough laboratory!

Partnering in occupational health


At the Oregon State Association of Occupational Health Nurses annual conference. Thank you Shelley Jones!

Here at OHSU we have the great pleasure of partnering with colleagues from Bangkok Dusit Medical Services through the OHSU Global SE Asia Program. The goal of this five-year alliance between OHSU and BDMS is to build bridges, share knowledge and collaborate in research to advance health. Not only have I been lucky to travel to Thailand to work with BDMS staff, but I was able to host four fabulous occupational health physicians and nurses  over the past two weeks.

Thank you to our supportive Oregon and Washington partners who shared their knowledge and expertise with our guests. We continue to learn so much as we compare and contrast our workplace safety and health systems, and as we imagine new and different ways to move ahead in our common goal of protecting workers in all workplaces, and improving health in all communities.

We thank our guests from Thailand for adhering to our demanding schedule. We give particular thanks to our partners and colleagues including: Oregon OSHA Consultation team, Hoffman Construction Company, SAIF Corporation, the Boeing Company, Kaiser, OHSU Employee Health, OHSU Risk Management, OHSU Patient Transportation, the Oregon State Association of Occupational Health Nurses, Gunderson, Harry’s Fresh Foods, Progressive Rehab Associates, and Northwest Occupational Medicine.

We are so lucky to work with so many fabulous partners and collaborators. We could not do our work without you!


Learning about Oregon OSHA Consultation from Russell Frankel.




Joining Oregon OSHA on a consultation with Hoffman Construction Company. Thank you Bill Brumm and Tony Howard (and Craig Hamelund!)


Learning about SAIF Corp with Deb Fell-Carlson. Thanks also to Dan Stuckrath!


At Harry’s Fresh Foods with Sonya Pollard.


Trading notes with OHSU Occupational Health clinicians.


Learning about HoverMatt use from OHSU Patient Transportation team.


Comparing Risk Management notes with Laura Martin.


Participation Guidelines

Remember: information you share here is public; it isn't medical advice. Need advice or treatment? Contact your healthcare provider directly. Read our Terms of Use and this disclaimer

Visit our Resource Directory

Visit our Resource Directory

The best on workplace safety, health and well-being

Follow us on twitter

Follow us on twitter

Monthly Archives

Yearly Archives