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DISPLAY SCREEN EQUIPMENT AWARENESS University of Huddersfield Occupational Health Department NB please view as a Slide Show to enable the hyperlinks in.

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Presentation on theme: "DISPLAY SCREEN EQUIPMENT AWARENESS University of Huddersfield Occupational Health Department NB please view as a Slide Show to enable the hyperlinks in."— Presentation transcript:

1 DISPLAY SCREEN EQUIPMENT AWARENESS University of Huddersfield Occupational Health Department NB please view as a Slide Show to enable the hyperlinks in this presentation Occupational Health Department October 2012

2 Aim of session To provide employees with awareness of the potential health and safety risks associated with using Display Screen Equipment (DSE) and how to manage these effectively. Occupational Health Department October 2012

3 Objectives Recognise and understand the health and safety risks associated with DSE work. Understand university policy. Appreciate personal role in managing DSE risks effectively. Equip self to undertake a DSE self assessment and troubleshoot identified individual risks. Occupational Health Department October 2012

4 Legal Perspectives Regulation as directed by the European Union: DSE Regulations enforced 1 January 1993 (amended 2002). The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (1999) are currently under revision – these require employers to assess risks posed to workers by their work or business. These regulations require DSE users to be identified and individual risk assessments to be undertaken. Occupational Health Department October 2012

5 University Display Screen Equipment Policy The DSE policy is located within the University Health and Safety Policy. Overall responsibility for guidance to the university on DSE matters rests with the Occupational Health team. In summary the policy: establishes what is required of Schools and Support Services to ensure compliance with the DSE Regulations sets out a DSE Assessment Process to ensure each workstation meets the requirements of the Regulations applies to all types of DSE including laptop computers The full policy may be viewed here please choose DSE policy.here Occupational Health Department October 2012

6 DSE assessment process Who is a DSE user? According to the Display Screen Equipment Regulations thisDisplay Screen Equipment Regulations is any employee who : uses DSE for continuous or near-continuous spells of an hour or more at a time and uses DSE in this way more or less daily; and has to transfer information quickly to or from the DSE. Occupational Health Department October 2012

7 DSE assessment process Under the university policy individual employees are required to undertake a self assessment at the start of employment, every 2 years subsequently or when you undergo any changes e.g. office moves. An assessment and compliance with the policy is also required if you have an agreement to work at home using your own IT equipment. See the university home working policy.university home working policy If you regularly use a laptop computer in the course of your work you are expected to follow the same principles. Occupational Health Department October 2012

8 DSE assessment process The following slides provide you with an insight into the Health Risks associated with DSE use. At the end of this course you will be guided towards using the university self assessment process. This process will identify any problems specific to you as the user and take you through relevant actions to reduce risks. Occupational Health Department October 2012

9 Back, neck and upper limb pain can be exacerbated by poor posture when seated: Ergonomists advise that you should have your desk arranged so that the keyboard and screen are situated directly in front of you, preferably on a straight, not a curved part of the desk. If you have to work on a curved desk ensure that you are placed directly in front of the screen. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

10 Back, neck and upper limb pain can be exacerbated by poor posture when seated: It is best to have any peripheral equipment (e.g. mouse, telephone, digipen, keyboard), placed directly within your close field of reach to avoid over reaching and exerting strain on your upper limbs and shoulders. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

11 There are many & varied seats available however with adjustments most people can be accommodated within the available provisions within the university. Your seat should be placed at a height to ensure your arms are roughly parallel to the desk surface. Your thighs should be well supported by the seat pan and here should be a small gap between the back of your legs and the seat pan. Make sure that your low back is fully supported by the backrest, your shoulders are not hunched forwards and your elbows are placed vertically beneath your shoulders. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

12 The pressure on the discs in your lower back can be reduced significantly by having an open angle at the hip with a slight downwards slope to the thigh (see picture right). After these adjustments, if your feet do not sit flat on the floor you may also need a foot rest. HINT Check underneath your seat and see if the adjustors / levers on your chair will alter the back rest angle and height and the seat pan position / tilt and height. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

13 Back, neck and upper limb pain can be exacerbated by poor posture when seated: Shoulder pain can arise if you hold your elbows away from your body. Some people find that adjustable arm rests are helpful although these sometimes prevent you from getting your chair close enough to the desk which can result in leaning forwards therefore these need to be used with caution. NB these can easily be removed if not required. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

14 Upper limb disorders with a variety of names RSI, carpal tunnel syndrome, tenosynovitis etc.) can be exacerbated by poor positioning. The optimum position for the arms / wrists is in a straight line with no deviation from the midline. Deviation away from a straight line can result in friction on the tendons of the wrist and irritation for every keystroke that you make. The same applies to use of the mouse. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

15 Neck pain can be reduced by stopping your head from tilting forwards: If it is not already positioned with the screen at eye level or up to 20 degrees lower try moving it now and ensure that your neck is held upright whilst working. Document holders at the same height as the screen top, alongside the screen can also help. Angled writing slopes between screen and keyboard can reduce neck strain. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

16 If you do not have touch typing skills you can increase the strain on the neck when frequently checking lettering on the keyboard. Touch typing courses are available to staff though Computing & Library Services. Call ext 2955 for information. There are also various free touch typing lessons to be found online however you should check with IT supportonline before downloading any of these. For frequent phone use in conjunction with computer data entry a headset is recommended. This will reduce strain if cradling the handset between your shoulder & ear. Contact telephone service requests for more info about headsets.telephone service requests Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks Reducing musculo-skeletal disorders

17 Having a change - check how long you are spending working on the PC – a complete change of work activity for 10 minutes in every hour is standard recommended practice. Micro breaks, for a few seconds every 10 minutes will also be beneficial in reducing general muscle fatigue - try to stretch your arms down at your sides at this interval. Research evidence to support this advice on exercises to reduce this problem can be read herehere Aim to stand up, stretch and change your posture every 20 minutes. Occupational Health Department October 2012

18 Health Risks reducing visual fatigue & headaches Headaches and Visual fatigue can result from various factors: The screen being too close – it should be roughly at arms length from you. Glare from windows, light fittings, reflective surfaces. Inadequate lighting. Screen problems - you may need to adjust the controls on the screen (brightness, contrast, resolution) & ensure that it is clean. If you are unsure how to adjust these controls please contact IT support on ext 3737 or by email.email Occupational Health Department October 2012

19 If you find yourself leaning forward in order to read the screen you would probably benefit from a free eye test which is funded by the university. Eye tests are a requirement for users if requested. This is stipulated in the DSE regulations. For information and vouchers go to: http://www.hud.ac.uk/oh/displayscreenequipment/ Signs of visual fatigue can include: Burning, itching eyes, Blurring of vision, Nausea, Fatigue Check how long you are spending working on the PC – once again, a complete change of work activity for 10 minutes in every hour is standard recommended practice, by refocusing your eyes on something other than the computer screen. Occupational Health Department October 2012 Health Risks reducing visual fatigue & headaches

20 Health Risks - Stressors Physical & mental Stressors can relate to working practices Ask yourself the following questions: Do you feel under pressure to work on the PC for protracted periods without a break? Is this really necessary? Do you have any difficulties undertaking your job? Have you been trained on the software that you use? Have you made your manager aware of these problems? If you have not already considered why this is happening or taken action please check out the Stress resources on the Occupational Health websiteOccupational Health website and ensure that you follow the policy guidelines. Occupational Health Department October 2012

21 Health Risks work environment The work environment related to DSE work should provide: Enough room near to and underneath the desk for a comfortable working posture. Easy movement around – no clutter / blocked entrances or exits. Suitable & sufficient lighting with working window blinds, if required, to reduce glare on the screen. A generally comfortable temperature. Minimal distraction from background noise. Occupational Health Department October 2012

22 Health Risks portable computer use Lap top computers are not designed for extended use. The working position adopted for laptop use in conjunction with their narrow keyboards lends the user towards a greater risk of the health problems outlined earlier. If you are using one on a daily basis for more than an hour the following adaptations are recommended: Utilise the laptop screen as your monitor by placing it on a separate riser block or a vertical laptop riser. Organise a separate plug in keyboard and mouse. To watch a short video on laptop use click here (sound is nothere required). Occupational Health Department October 2012

23 Health Risks portable computer use In addition consider carefully how you transport your laptop. Considerations should include the overall weight, type of bag and personal safety / security. It is recommended that the weight is distributed evenly rather than on one shoulder. Laptop backpacks can be the most satisfactory solution. Occupational Health Department October 2012

24 DSE myths 1 – True or false? Using DSE will damage my eyes False Working with DSE will not cause disease or permanent damage to the eyes. Intensive work, poor screen position, unstable screen images or poor workplace lighting will cause discomfort. DSE work may also make you aware of an existing eye or eyesight defect. DSE gives out harmful levels of radiation False Visible light and other forms of electromagnetic radiation are emitted but at levels that present no risk. Occupational Health Department October 2012

25 DSE myths 2 – True or false? Working with DSE can cause skin disorders True A small number of people have experienced irritation, skin rashes or aggravated existing skin disorders whilst working with DSE. The causes seem to be a combination of electrostatic charges, low relative humidity and individual susceptibility. These effects can usually be combated by introducing sources of humidity into the environment. Occupational Health Department October 2012

26 DSE myths 3 – True or false? Im pregnant, I and my unborn child are at risk False There have been many scientific studies. These have shown no link between miscarriages or birth defects and working with DSE. However there is a Health and Safety policy to follow when employees are pregnant with a Risk Assessment requirement. Postural problems or restrictions in space associated with the growing bump may be referred by the individual to Occupational Health for advice.policyRisk Assessment Occupational Health Epileptic seizures are triggered whilst using DSE False A small number of people who suffer from photo-sensitive epilepsy are susceptible to flickering lights or striped patterns. They could be affected if the computer screen images are not stable. Most people can use DSE without suffering any adverse effects. Occupational Health Department October 2012

27 DSE assessment process 1 At the start of employment and every 2 years thereafter each member of staff completes a DSE Self-Assessment Questionnaire for their campus workstation. The assessment works through all of the key risk areas and you make your own record.DSE Self-Assessment Questionnaire Further assessments are undertaken for any additional work venues (home or other campus locations). You should troubleshoot any identified problems using the guide provided in each section of the assessment. Occupational Health Department October 2012

28 DSE assessment process 2 DSE Assessor will verify the perceived problems with the member of staff. This will involve discussions with you at your workstation and, if necessary, a more-detailed assessment. If any equipment is required the DSEA will liase with your manager who is responsible for any purchases. DSE Assessor will review the adaptations at an agreed date. Occupational Health Department October 2012 DSE Self-Assessment Questionnaire is forwarded to your manager or DSE Assessor (DSEA) depending upon local arrangements. The DSEA works through individual questionnaires to highlight any perceived unresolved problems identified by the member of staff. DSE Assessor

29 DSE problems - advice In the first instance please contact your DSE Assessor.DSE Assessor If you experience any of the following symptoms on a regular basis you should seek the advice of your General Practitioner musculoskeletal pains headaches other generalised aches & pains You should also revisit this course and repeat the DSE Self-Assessment.DSE Self-Assessment Signs of upper limb problems can include: Numbness of fingers, palms and other areas Aches and pains in the muscles and joints Tingling sensations or soreness If these symptoms do not resolve within 2 weeks of making adjustments please advise your manager and contact Occupational Health for further advice and assessment.Occupational Health Occupational Health Department October 2012

30 Final recap – recommended working posture Occupational Health Department October 2012 1.Back in its natural line and well supported, especially lumbar region. 2.Thighs well supported by the seat, small gap between seat and back of knees 3.Feet flat on the floor, footrest utilised if needed. 4.Forearms near-parallel with the floor. 5.Wrists not excessively bent up, down or sideways. 6.Screen height parallel or slightly below eye level to allow comfortable head and neck position. 7.Space in front of keyboard rest hands and wrists during breaks in typing. 1 2 3 4 6 5 7

31 Test & self assessment Thank you for completing the DSE awareness course In order to record that you have undertaken this training please complete a short test lodged on Unilearn.Unilearn If you have not undertaken the University of Huddersfield DSE self assessment in the past 2 years please complete it now.DSE self assessment Occupational Health Department October 2012


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