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Korean J Occup Environ Med. 1998 May;10(2):251-266. Korean. Original Article.
Park D , Han SH , Song DB .
Department of Industrial Engineering, Inha University, Korea.
Institute for Occupational & Environmental Medicine, GMC, Korea.

Today, CTDs (Cumulative Trauma Disorders) are one of major hazards in the US and European Industries disrupting work schedules, productivity and increasing workers compensation costs. The increase in injuries and their associated costs has led companies to form committees and implement programs to address this problem. Therefore, it is important that quantitative analysis tools help identify and assess industrial tasks that pose risk to workers. However, the process of quantifying risk in upper limb tasks is still in its infancy stage and calls for better measurement techniques are not going unheard. As the first work of quantification, baseline CTD checklist for risk assessment was developed in this study. It was mainly based on previous literature regarding CTDs. The checklist was unique in that its expected user was industrial hygienist who did not have much ergonomic background and in that it was targeted to Korean workers in various types of industries. As the first application of the checklist, some jobs in two industries (VDT, heavy Industry) were evaluated, and compared with the medical data. Eighteen out of thirty items in the checklist was univariately significant (p<0.05) on the results of medical examinations. The correlation between medical data and total risk score from the checklist was 0.62. The feasibility of its use by an industrial hygienist was also checked by comparing with the results by an ergonomist. Their correlation (on the basis of Kendall's tau-b) in terms of total risk score was 0.74. The checklist in this study shows reasonably good performance for the first trial. Further research will have to include continuous refinement and validation for many more industries and many more jobs.

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