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Working with old paper files

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EmmaJ
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Working with old paper files

Post by EmmaJ » Wed May 03, 2017 8:06 am

Hi
I'm new to the forum so hi everyone!
I work in care records for the NHS and the last 4/5 months I've been dealing with some really, really old dusty/ mouldy files. I'm asthmatic and have noticed that it's flaring up a lot lately and I'm even getting chest infections, which I haven't had in years. What should work be supplying for me to avoid this?
Thanks in advance for any info
EmmaJ

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bernicarey
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Re: Working with old paper files

Post by bernicarey » Wed May 03, 2017 3:53 pm

Hi Emma
welcome :wave:

Have you seen this info: https://www.asthma.org.uk/advice/trigge ... and-fungi/

Your employer, the NHS Trust or whatever, should have completed a Risk Assessment of working with old dusty and damp paperwork.
From that they must provide you with suitable respiratory protection.

This old American document from 1994 is about 'Mold as a Threat to Human Health'
http://cool.conservation-us.org/byorg/a ... 8-602.html
www.belvoirsafety.co.uk

Tomorrow - your reward for being safe today...

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Re: Working with old paper files

Post by Siblo » Wed May 03, 2017 4:18 pm

I sympathize,

I too have asthma and allergies and though nowhere near as bad as they were I still have flare ups.

A dust mask will help, but I'm itching thinking about it, so long sleeves and probably gloves too.

But these will be measures relatable to you and only you, if, and a big if, a risk assessment was carried out these irritants may not have been picked up on, the assessor may be fine with dust and have no allergies. (think peanuts and a zoo, only the guy allergic to nuts worries what's in the monkey food)

But you do need to act, ask for some PPE, or buy your own so you don't get ill and make a point insisting work provide some more.

Let us know if you have any success.

Hope this helps

Siblo

EmmaJ
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Re: Working with old paper files

Post by EmmaJ » Wed May 03, 2017 6:55 pm

Thank you all for your advice. I shall be going into work tomorrow and asking for a risk assessment as this wasn't done.
I was also going to take my own mask in too for now and ask that they provide replacements.
I will let you know how I get on
EmmaJ ;)

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Elf&Safety
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Re: Working with old paper files

Post by Elf&Safety » Fri Sep 01, 2017 12:44 pm

EmmaJ wrote:
Wed May 03, 2017 6:55 pm
Thank you all for your advice. I shall be going into work tomorrow and asking for a risk assessment as this wasn't done.
I was also going to take my own mask in too for now and ask that they provide replacements.
I will let you know how I get on
EmmaJ ;)
Legally, any required PPE must be provided, paid for and maintained by them.

Approach their on-site health and safety team and explain the problem, i would personally request to visit occupational health for a spirometry test repeated annually; further backing up future claims, or helping them prove that they haven't made you worse - it could protect both sides. But a risk assessment is required for you and your individual role, we are all different and what's ok for Joe Bloggs may not be suitable for yourself

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