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Decedent Handling: Understanding the Challenges and Exploring Opportunities for Ergonomics research
SessionOE5 - Decedent Handling: Understanding the Challenges and Exploring Opportunities for Ergonomics research
DescriptionThe COVID-19 pandemic has taken many lives in the last two years. Handling high volumes of decedents within and beyond a hospital's environment has put healthcare- and deathcare-workers at an increased health risk throughout this pandemic. However, systematic research about manual handling of the dead either at the hospital, morgue, funeral home, or in situations of mass fatalities is still in infancy. This session aims to educate ergonomics and safety professionals on the importance of understanding the risk factors associated with handling the decedents, design issues of body bags, routine versus mass fatality handling of the decedents, and participatory ergonomics. This session will also examine the feasibility of translating the past and current research on the handling of live patients to the handling of patients postmortem. Finally, psychosocial risks due to handling the deceased within the pandemic environment that might influence these workers' physical and mental health will be deliberated.
Subject Matter Expert