Skin disease in the workplace

Occupational skin disease is common, particularly in occupations such as chemical operatives, hairdressers, printers, beauticians, engineering labourers or ceramic makers. The Foundation funded a study aimed at developing and validating a toolkit for occupational skin surveillance in the workplace. The toolkit obtained photographic images and these digital photos were then assessed by dermatologists remotely for signs of occupational hand dermatitis. The advantages of this teledermatology system will be a standardised skin surveillance system of outstanding quality, providing a cost-effective surveillance solution utilising expert input, which is particularly helpful for small and medium sized companies without access to an occupational health service.   The research started in 2007, and the Foundation funding also supported the young researcher undertaking the study to complete his PhD in 2012.  Scientific papers based on the study are still being accepted.