Course: Occupational Health and Vulnerable Worker Populations

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Course Description

Discusses occupational health program considerations, (including all levels of prevention), for vulnerable populations, using examples such as the health needs of women workers, shift workers, aging workers, families of workers, and workers with chronic diseases and impairments. Focuses on strategies for identifying and removing barriers that affect health and work performance; program development and management responsibilities; and cost issues related to implementing selected preventive and rehabilitative programs. Presents relevant research findings on the ability of vulnerable populations to benefit from safe and healthy working lives.

Course Objectives

On completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Identify, for selected vulnerable subgroups, factors that influence the need for specific occupational health services
  2. Discuss examples of interaction between occupational and environmental risk factors and host factors that affect health and work performance
  3. Describe the application of research findings to the practice of health professionals, including safety specialists, nurses, physicians, health educators, and others
  4. Examine the contribution of workplace exposures to home environment contamination and implications for workers and their families
  5. Analyze the occupational health needs of a specific vulnerable worker population


There is no textbook for this course. See Readings page for recommended materials.

Course Requirements

  • 25%: Class participation and interaction
  • 5%: Identify a vulnerable population and justify your decision
  • 60%: Final paper, including PowerPoint, abstract, and references
  • 10%: Review of classmates' final paper, abstract, and PowerPoint

Other Course Guidelines

The content of this course is divided into seven separate modules. The lecture sections are presented sequentially and should be completed in that order. Students may return to any previous section at any point and review its contents at their convenience. Each lecture section includes links to the lecture materials, a listing of reading assignments, and links to Web resources.