Effects of an injury and illness prevention program on occupational safety behaviors among rice farmers in Nakhon Nayok Province, Thailand
Sapsatree Santaweesuk,1,2 Robert S Chapman,1 Wattasit Siriwong1,3
1College of Public Health Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand; 2Srinakarinwirot University Ongkharak Campus, Nakhon Nayok, Thailand; 3Thai Fogarty ITREOH Center, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand
Abstract: The objective of this study was to determine the effects of an Injury and Illness Prevention (IIP) program intervention on occupational safety behavior among rice farmers in Nakhon Nayok province, Thailand. This was a quasi-experimental study in an intervention group and a control group. It was carried out in two rice farming communities, in which most people are rice farmers with similar socio-demographic characteristics. Multistage sampling was employed, selecting one person per rice farming household. The intervention group was 62 randomly selected rice farmers living in a rural area; another 55 rice farmers served as the control group. A structured face-to-face interview questionnaire was administered to participants to evaluate their safety behaviors in four areas: equipment use, pesticide use, ergonomics, and working conditions. The 2-week intervention program consisted of four elements: 1) health education, 2) safety inspection, 3) safety communication, and 4) health surveillance. Data were collected at baseline and 4 months after the intervention (follow-up). We used a general linear model repeated-measures analysis of variance to assess the mean difference between baseline and follow-up occupational safety behavior points between the intervention and control groups. Pesticide safety behaviors significantly increased in the intervention group compared with the control group. Ergonomics and working conditions points also increased in the intervention group, but not significantly so. The equipment use score decreased in the intervention group. It is necessary to identify and develop further measures to improve occupational safety behaviors. Some methods, such as effective risk communication, could be added to increase risk perception.
Keywords: occupational safety behaviors, rice farmers, safety program, injury and illness prevention program
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