Summary Abstracts
Summer 2017 Journal

Staying Current on Government Affairs
In this Journal column, Stephen Burt, MFA, BS, AOHP Government Affairs Committee Chair, provides an update on the increase in pregnancy discrimination lawsuits, which now number second only to disability lawsuits. He reviews details of seven 2017 lawsuits that arose from inadvertent violations of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 and provides recommendations for hospitals and other healthcare facilities to avoid such cases of unlawful discrimination.

Editor’s Column
This standard feature provides commentary from the current Journal Editor, Kim Stanchfield, RN, COHN-S. In this issue, she shares with members her hospital's system to improve communication at the time of an infectious/communicable event with possible exposures, featuring a best practice communication script for a pertussis exposure.

Association Community Liaison Report
Through this regular Journal article, MaryAnn Gruden, MSN, CRNP, NP-C, COHN-S/CM, details how AOHP is gaining visibility as an expert regarding occupational health issues. In this edition, provides an update on OSHA's website for electronic submission of injury and illness logs. Also included is a NIOSH review highlighting new modules of the OHSN, the announcement that AOHP is now a Total Worker Health® Affiliate, a seven-part video series on improving EMS worker safety through ambulance design and testing, and a new fact sheet on older drivers in the workplace. Gruden also offers a report on the work of the NIOSH Board of Scientific Counselors, to which she was appointed in January 2016.

Perspectives in Healthcare Safety
Cory Worden, MS, CSHM, CSP, CHSP, ARM, REM, CESCO, is the Manager of System Safety for the Memorial Hermann Healthcare System in Houston, TX. In his standing Journal column, Worden shares his insights on safety in healthcare. This issue's feature examines how the healthcare industry dedicates significant resources to patient safety, but is often lacking when it comes to employee safety. While regulatory compliance creates safe conditions, a culture of safety must include the training, equipping and conditioning of employees to practice safe behaviors to avoid workplace injuries and exposures. 

Beyond NIOSH eNews
NIOSH has featured a number of healthcare-related studies in recent issues of its monthly bulletin, Research Rounds. MaryAnn Gruden, MSN, CRNP, NP-C, COHN-S/CM, provides a review of these studies from spring and summer 2017:

·       Ideal Cardiovascular Health Varies by Occupation – 4/2017
·       Personal Protective Equipment Does Not Take the Heat Equally – 6/2017
·       Cooling Vests Linked to Fewer Signs of Heat Stress – 6/2017

·       Computer Simulation Links More Job Control, Lower Job Demands to Decreased Stress – 7/2017 

Update: Influenza Activity in the United States During the 2016–17 Season and Composition of the 2017–18 Influenza Vaccine

During the 2016–17 influenza season (October 2, 2016– May 20, 2017) in the United States, influenza activity was moderate. Activity remained low through November, increased during December, and peaked in February nationally, although there were regional differences in the timing of influenza activity. Influenza A(H3N2) viruses predominated through mid-March and were predominant overall for the season, but influenza B viruses were most commonly reported from late March through May. This report summarizes influenza activity in the United States during October 2, 2016–May 20, 2017 and updates the previous summary. (Reprinted from the June 30, 2017 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report; Vol. 66, No. 25)