The practice of modern medicine

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The situation is similar in other developed countries. Physicians are bound by legal restrictions and must report industrial diseases. The industrial physician's most important function, however, is to prevent industrial diseases. Many of the measures to this end have become standard practice, but, especially in industries working with new substances, the physician should determine if workers are being damaged and suggest preventive measures. The industrial physician may advise management about industrial hygiene and the need for safety devices and protective clothing and may become involved in building design. The physician or health worker may also inform the worker of occupational health hazards.

Modern factories usually have arrangements for giving first aid in case of accidents. Depending upon the size of the plant, the facilities may range from a simple first-aid station to a large suite of lavishly equipped rooms and may include a staff of qualified nurses and physiotherapists and one or perhaps more full-time physicians.

Periodic medical examination. Physicians in industry carry out medical examinations, especially on new employees and on those returning to work after sickness or injury. In addition, those liable to health hazards may be examined regularly in the hope of detecting evidence of incipient damage. In some organizations every employee may be offered a regular medical examination.

The industrial and the personal physician. When a worker also has a persona! physician, there may be doubt. in some cases, as to which physician bears the main responsibility for his health. When someone has an accident

or becomes acutely ill at work, the first aid is given or directed by the industrial physician. Subsequent treatment may be given either at the clinic at work or by the personal physician. Because of labour-management difficulties, workers sometimes tend not to trust the diagnosis of the management-hired physician.

Industrial health services. During the epoch of the Soviet Union and the Soviet bloc. industrial health service generally developed more fully in those countries than in the capitalist countries. At the larger industrial establishments in the Soviet Union, polyclinics were created to provide both occupational and general can for workers and their families. Occupational physicians were responsible for preventing occupational diseases and injuries, health screening, immunization and health education.

In the capitalist countries, on the other hand, no fixed pattern of industrial health service has emerged. Legislation impinges upon health in various ways, including the provision of safety measures, the restriction of pollution and the enforcement of minimum standards of lightning, ventilation, and space per person. In most of these countries there is found an infinite variety of schemes financed and run by individual firms or equally, by huge industries. Labour unions have also done much to enforce health codes within their respective industries. In the developing countries there has been generally little advance in industrial medicine.

Family health care. In many societies special facilities are provided for the health care of pregnant women mothers, and their young children. The health care needs of these three groups, are generally recognized to be so closely related as to require a highly integrated service that includes prenatal care, the birth of the baby. the postnatal period, and the needs of the infant. Such a continuum should be followed by a service attentive to the needs of young children and then by a school health service. Family clinics are common in countries that have state-sponsored health services, such as those in the United Kingdom and elsewhere in Europe. Family health care in some developed countries, such as the United States, is provided for low-income groups by state-subsidized facilities, but other groups defer to private physicians or privately run clinics.

: 11/11/2009