© Telegram file photo
Nick McGrath — File photo
The provincial government announced today in Labrador that a medical audit will be conducted to help reduce the risk of silcosis among mine workers.
Silicosis is a lung disease which results from exposure to silica dust.
A news release notes that Morneau Shepell, described as a leading provider of integrated health solutions, has been awarded the contract to conduct the audit which will represent a sample of current and former mine workers in Labrador West.
“This initiative has been a major priority for me as the Minister of Service NL,” said Nick McGrath, Minister of Service NL.
“With the information that is gathered through this process we will be able to enhance awareness and education for everyone working in the mining industry and for medical professionals,” McGrath said.
“The Occupational Health and Safety Branch’s first priority is preventing workers from being exposed to silica dust. This medical audit will provide us with valuable information on those prevention efforts to date.”
Silicosis rarely occurs until at least 20 years or more from first exposure. Morneau Shepell’s medical audit will take place over a two-year period with preparation and development work to be done during the first year and the actual review of x-rays, review of findings and final report to be completed during year two. The audit will be conducted by expert radiologists, auditors, academics and other medical professionals.