Biological monitoring can be used in conjunction with environmental monitoring to assess exposure to chemicals in the workplace. Whilst environmental monitoring measures an individual’s exposure, BM reflects the actual uptake of a chemical into the body by measuring levels of the chemical or a product of it’s metabolism in the blood, urine or breath.
The routes of exposure are predominantly inhalation, ingestion or skin absorption. Measurements in biological samples can reflect the total uptake of these chemicals by all routes and is particularly useful where chemicals can potentially be absorbed through the skin. Here it is used as an indicator as to whether Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and control measures to reduce exposure are working well.
Biological monitoring can be used on its own or as a tool alongside other monitoring techniques (air, surface) to provide information on chemical exposures in the workplace.
The Use of Biological Monitoring for COSHH purposes
Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH) is in place to protect the health of workers who may be exposed to hazardous substances in the workplace. Biological Monitoring can provide supporting evidence in evaluating the success of implemented exposure control measures under the following COSHH Regulations:
- Regulation 6 – Assessment of the risk to health created by work involving substances hazardous to health
- Regulation 7 – Prevention or control of exposure to substances hazardous to health
- Regulation 10 – Monitoring exposure at the workplace
- Regulation 11 – Health Surveillance
Scientific Analysis Laboratories are an analytical laboratory who specialise in the testing of occupational hygiene and biological samples and can offer a comprehensive range of analysis as follows:
- Ethylbenzene & Styrene
- Methylenebis (2-chloroaniline) (MbOCA- MOCA)
- Methylene Dianiline (MDA)
- Polyaromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH’s)
- Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCB’s)
- Dioxins and Furans