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  • Print publication year: 1993
  • Online publication date: March 2008

III.9 - Occupational Diseases

from Part III - Medical Specialties and Disease Prevention
In recent years, occupational diseases have become an area of interest to medicine, public health, industry, and labor. The Industrial Revolution fundamentally changed the methods of production and work relationships throughout the world. In industrial sections of the United States, individual physicians and state public-health officials participated in reform movements for workmen's compensation legislation, and the American Association for Labor Legislation led campaigns against problems as lead poisoning and phossy jaw. While a host of investigators began to study particular acute diseases caused by specific industrial toxins, the problem of dust in the environments of factories and mines galvanized the attention of the health-community and work force. Dust was a potential problem in virtually every industrial setting. In the first half of the twentieth century, labor and business focused mostly on silica dust, and though this diverted attention from the other dust diseases, it did lead to the formulation of public policies that were applicable to other chronic industrial diseases.
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The Cambridge World History of Human Disease
  • Online ISBN: 9781139053518
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