Working Group 2 will focus on the development of common European standards pertaining to OSD, addressing all relevant aspects e.g. diagnostics, exposure assessment, therapy, disease management, and prevention measures. Some Western European countries have had a leading position in registration of OSD and establishing standardised national prevention programmes against OSD. The approach to OSD may differ between countries due to different national legal situations, insurance and health care systems and awareness of the issue. However, systematically evaluating the national experiences will help to establish common European OSD standards to enforce safer working environments all over Europe, especially in low-income countries where standardized OSD prevention programmes are yet lacking. Various methods of raising awareness, early dermatological interventions, specific teaching (“workers’ education”) regarding personal skin protection and proactive design of work processes will be in the centre of interest.

The main approaches of this WG will be:

  • Systematic survey and documentation of the current state of OSD registration and prevention strategies in the participating countries
  • Based on a critical evaluation and discussion of above findings, definition of “robust common denominators” on strategies of diagnostics (e.g. as a basis for epidemiological contact allergy surveillance), assessment of skin exposure, therapy and disease management, as well as prevention measures including workers’ education
  • Systematic survey of pertinent scientific evidence and ‘best practice’ models including diagnostic strategies in cases of suspected (occupational) allergic contact dermatitis 

 The expected outcomes are:

  • Scientifically based guidelines, joint curricula for workers’ education, and training programmes for occupational hygienists, safety engineers, health educationalists and physicians. These will consider the national differences in social insurance systems, health/safety regulations and legal requirements which may entail partly different pathways of primary and secondary prevention
  • Patch test guidelines on a European level (on behalf of the ESCD-European Society of Contact Dermatitis) to be applied in the routine care of patients with suspected (occupational) allergic contact dermatitis (S2 guideline), including testing patients’ workplace products