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Lucchini, Roberto G.; McDiarmid, Melissa; Laan, Gert van der; Rosen, Mitchel; Placidi, Donatella; Radon, Katja ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5271-3972; Ruchirawat, Mathuros; Kurtz, Lena and Landrigan, Philip (2018): Education and Training: Key Factors in Global Occupational and Environmental Health. In: Annals of Global Health, Vol. 84, No. 3: pp. 436-441 [PDF, 1MB]


Introduction: Education and training in Occupational and Environmental Health (OEH) play an important role in building global capacity and contribute to safer working conditions. The shortage of occupational health professionals, the lack of knowledge and a high number of occupational accidents and diseases stress the demand for providing further education and training in OEH. This need is especially urgent in low and middle-income countries. Three international courses on OEH provide valuable insights on how to develop successful trainings in the field and how to contribute to the creation of healthy and safe workplaces. Methodology and Results: The courses "Global Occupational and Environmental Determinants of Diseases: a multidisciplinary and multicultural approach for prevention" (University of Brescia, Italy), "Advanced International Training Course in OEH" (Chulabhorn Research Institute, Bangkok, Thailand) and "Teaching interventions crossing borders" (Ludwig-Maximillians-Universitat, Munich, Germany) offer a unique networking opportunity for health professionals from low-, middle- and high-income countries. Three main characteristics of learning were identified as successful for adult learning in OEH: Interdisciplinary learning allows exchanging skills and knowledge and therefore closes gaps between the several disciplines within OEH. Experiential learning enables participants to reflect on their personal experiences, e.g. through workplace visits. Finally, active learning empowers the learner to take the leading role in the learning process using e.g. problem- or project-based learning approaches. Conclusion: Training and education in OEH should become a higher priority by including it in the standard public health and medical curricula. For this, train the trainer approaches are essential in many countries. Any OEH training should follow the interdisciplinary, experiential and interactive learning approach and should be accessible to participants from all regions.

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