Occupational medicine, especially until 1960 called industrial medicine, is the branch of medicine which deals with the maintenance of health in the workplace, including the prevention and treatment of diseases and injuries, and also promotes productivity and social adjustment.
It is thus the branch of clinical medicine most active in the field of occupational health and safety. OM specialists work to ensure that the highest standards of occupational health and safety can be achieved and maintained. While OM may involve a wide number of disciplines, it centers on preventive medicine and the management of illness, injury, and disability related to the workplace. Occupational physicians must have a wide knowledge of clinical medicine and be competent in a number of important areas. They often advise international bodies, governmental and state agencies, organizations and trade unions. There are contextual links to physical medicine and rehabilitation and to insurance medicine.
- Have knowledge of potential hazards in the workplace including toxic properties of materials used.
- Be able to evaluate employee fitness for work.
- Be able to diagnose and treat occupational disease and injury.
- Know about rehabilitation methods, health education, and government laws and regulations concerning workplace health.
- Be able to manage health service delivery.
OM can be described as:
"work that combines clinical medicine, research, and advocacy for people who need the assistance of health professionals to obtain some measure of justice and health care for illnesses they suffer as a result of companies pursuing the biggest profits they can make, no matter what the effect on workers or the communities they operate in."
The first textbook of occupational medicine, De Morbis Artificum Diatriba (Diseases of Workers), was written by Italian physician Bernardino Ramazzini in 1700.
Schools that offer programs
Physicians and others trained in health and safety may specialize in various aspects of occupational medicine, including toxicology, human factors and ergonomics, epidemiology, safety studies and engineering. OM training in the U.S. is supported by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health through the NIOSH Education and Research Centers. Many major schools of medicine offer programs with an emphasis in occupational health and safety, including:
- University of Cincinnati Occupational and Environmental Medicine Program
- Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
- West Virginia School of Medicine Institute of Occupational and Environmental Health
- Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
- Rutgers Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute
- University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health
- University of Michigan School of Public Health
- University of Minnesota School of Public Health/HealthPartners
- UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health
- Harvard School of Public Health
- University of Illinois-Chicago School of Public Health
- University of Texas Health Science Center-Houston
- University of Utah- Rocky Mountain Center for Occupational and Environmental Health
- University of South Florida College of Public Health
- University of Washington School of Public Health
- Loma Linda University Occupational Medicine Residency Program
- University of Iowa Occupational Medicine Residency Program
- Monash University
- University of New South Wales
- Curtin University
- Edith Cowan University
- University of New South Wales
United States of America
- National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
- Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
- Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH)
- National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
- Social Security Organisation (SOCSO)
- International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH)
- Institute of Occupational Medicine (IOM)
- International Occupational Hygiene Association (ICHA)
- Collegium Ramazzini
- Academy of Occupational and Environmental Medicine Malaysia (ACOEMM)
- Society of Occupational and Environmental Medicine-MMA (SOEM-MMA)
United States of America
- American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM)
- The American Osteopathic College of Occupational and Preventative Medicine (AOCOPM)
- California Society of Industrial Medicine and Surgery (CSIMS)
- Western Occupational and Environmental Medicine Association (WOEMA)
- American Board of Preventive Medicine
- American Osteopathic Board of Preventive Medicine
- Industrial and organizational psychology
- Occupational disease
- Occupational health nursing
- Occupational health psychology
- Occupational hygiene
- Occupational Medicine (journal)
- [https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=occupational+medicine%2C+industrial+medicine&year_start=1800&year_end=2000&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2Coccupational%20medicine%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cindustrial%20medicine%3B%2Cc0 Google Ngram Viewer chart
- Encyclopedia Britannica
- It can be confusing that British English also uses industrial medicine to refer to occupational health and safety and also uses occupational health to refer to occupational medicine. See the Collins Dictionary's entries for industrial medicine and occupational medicine and occupational health.
- McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms
- Thomas McClure, MD. "What Is Occupational Medicine and What Do Occupational Medicine Specialists Do?". San Francisco Medical Society. Archived from the original on 26 September 2006. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
- Interview with Dr. Stephen Levin/Obituary, Katie Halper, The Nation, February 14, 2012