The COVID Coaster

COVID-19 brought a whirlwind of change to occupational health, but at its core, it's about maintaining a healthy workplace. It's not just reacting to injuries; it's about proactive measures to prevent them and enhance employee well-being. Assess your occupational health needs by evaluating injury trends, prevention programs, and workplace safety measures. While COVID demanded attention, it's time to refocus. Company leaders now recognize the critical link between employee health and business success. Occupational health goes far beyond pandemic response—it's about the fundamentals of a thriving workforce. Prioritize your team's well-being today.
roller coaster viewed from below

According to some, the past 24 months have been a roller coaster of responses in occupational health.  There certainly has been a great deal of attention focused on workplace health and infectious diseases, and companies have spent unprecedented amounts of resources to maintain employee health in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  However, from the perspective of occupational health foundations, the pandemic response is simply an expression of Occupational Health 101: it’s about the basics of maintaining a healthy workplace.

Reactive vs. Proactive Healthcare

Occupational healthcare is fundamentally a focused effort on maintaining employee health.  There are the reactive components of occupational health, such as responding to employee injuries and illnesses.  When an employee suffers a workplace injury, then needs care.  The employee has to receive post-injury treatment and ultimately return to full productive work status.

Taking injury care a step further, the next stage of occupational health is evaluating how injuries occur and taking proactive measures to prevent them or reduce their severity.  Occupational healthcare programs focused on prevention, and mitigation can be potent tools for reducing overall occupational healthcare spending and enhancing employee health and productivity.

Beyond injury, occupational health also focuses on employee and workplace assessments.  A skilled occupational healthcare provider can engage in workplace ergonomic assessments, formal or informal, to enhance working conditions for all employees.  In addition, providers can engage in evaluations such as respirator fit testing or audiometric (hearing) testing.  These programs ensure that employees receive good protection from workplace hazards, such as toxic dust or loud noises.

Evaluating Your Occ Health Needs

When your company is looking at your occupational healthcare needs, you should carefully assess:

  • Workplace injury and OSHA-recordable incident data and trends
  • Programs in place to prevent and reduce the severity of injuries
  • Programs in place to ensure that the workplace is safe and that employees are protected from workplace hazards

With the pandemic, many companies have focused heavily on COVID response at the expense of other occupational healthcare needs.  Before COVID, having a written Injury and Illness Prevention Plan and an Airborne Transmissible Disease plan was required for most companies.  As we face ever-changing requirements in our corporate response to COVID, this is the time to refocus our attention.  Now more than ever, corporate leadership understands the direct correlation between employee health and company productivity/profitability.  That correlation continues throughout all the occupational health industry, far beyond COVID.

Upcoming Webinar – The COVID Coaster

Now is the time to evaluate your occupational healthcare needs and embrace new opportunities to build a safer, more profitable workplace.

dfrieders

dfrieders

Chief Solutions Officer

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Work Health Solutions is dedicated to preserving a safe work environment and improving existing programs and care for local, regional and national organizations.

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Dr. Michael Tenison

A series of notable accomplishments distinguish Dr. Michael Tenison’s career in medical operations and healthcare management:

  • Successfully led medical operations at a national healthcare provider, focusing on optimizing healthcare delivery and patient outcomes.
  • Oversaw the regional medical practices in key markets like Oregon and Northern California, ensuring consistent, quality medical care and service delivery.
  • Demonstrated exceptional leadership in building and mentoring a large medical provider team, enhancing team performance and patient care standards.
  • Implemented strategic company policies and protocols, significantly improving center efficiency, clinical quality, and patient experiences.
  • Played a pivotal role in financial planning and identifying growth opportunities for healthcare services, contributing to the organization’s overall success.
  • Served as a primary point of contact for regional employer clients and insurance companies, fostering strong relationships and effective communication.
  • Maintained high medical care and case management standards through diligent supervision, chart audits, and performance metric analysis.

Dr. Matt Feeley

Dr. Matt Feeley is a renowned figure in military aviation medicine, with a robust background in occupational and environmental medicine from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. 

  • Former Naval Flight Surgeon, exemplifying his expertise in aerospace medicine and commitment to military health.
  • Served with distinction at NSA Bahrain and HSM-37, earning the COMPACFLT Flight Surgeon of the Year award for exceptional medical service.
  • Supported U.S. Marines VMFA-323 aboard the USS Nimitz, MACG-38, and VMU-3, demonstrating versatility and leadership in diverse medical environments.
  • Broad interests and significant contributions in global health, corporate medicine, and aerospace medicine, highlighting his multidisciplinary approach.
  • Proven track record as a dynamic leader, well-equipped to face the challenges in a fractional medical directorship role with innovative solutions.

Dr. Glen Cheng

A physician-attorney with a dedication to healthcare innovation, informatics, and digital health.

  • Currently spearheads employee health protection and promotion within the VA Pittsburgh Health Care System.
  • Trained in residency at Harvard, achieving board certification as a physician; also a licensed patent attorney with experience as FDA regulatory counsel.
  • Co-founded Acceleromics, a consulting firm providing clinical and regulatory guidance to digital health startups.

Erin Davis

 Chief Clinical Officer at Work Health Solutions, certified in Adult-Gerontology (AGNP-C) and Athletic Training (ATC).

  • Oversees clinical operations and ensures high clinical standards across the company’s national field staff.
  • Former Manager of Clinic Operations and Occupational Health Nurse Practitioner at Stanford University Occupational Health Center (SUOHC).
  • Specialized in treating occupational injuries and illnesses, and provided medical surveillance and travel medicine consults at Stanford and SLAC National Accelerator Lab.
  • Dedicated to sports and occupational injury treatment and prevention.
  • Assistant Clinical Faculty at UCSF, mentoring students in clinical rotations within the Adult Gerontology and Occupational and Environmental Health Program.
  • Holds leadership roles as Treasurer and President Elect of the California El Camino Real Association of Occupational Health Nurses (CECRAOHN), affiliated with the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN).

Dr. Robert Goldsmith

Expert in benefits design and onsite innovation with specialization in the pharmaceutical industry.

  • Previous role as Executive Director for Employee Health at Novartis Services, Inc., leading health services and clinical support.
  • Instrumental in creating an integrated healthcare system at Novartis.
  • Former private practice in internal medicine in Stamford, Connecticut, and Medical Director consultant for GTE Corporation.
  • Transitioned to GE as a Global Medical Director in 2000.
  • Holds a medical degree from Albert Einstein College, an MPH from the University of Connecticut, and completed training at Greenwich Hospital and Yale-New Haven Medical Center.
  • Assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at the Vagelos School of Medicine, Columbia University.
  • Serves as a team physician for high school athletes in Stamford.
  • Published works on occupational health risks, primary prevention, and exercise-induced asthma.