Key Findings and Recommendations for Respiratory Disease Prevention Research
Respiratory diseases have always been a health risk for mine workers. All mining processes create fine dusts, some of which is respirable. Prolonged exposure to high levels of respirable dust can lead to the development of respiratory diseases such as coal worker’s pneumoconiosis (CWP), silicosis, and chronic obstructive lung disease (Morgan, 1984; Christiani, 2005a, b). The Mining Program and the former U.S. Bureau of Mines (USBM) developed appropriate strategies to control and eliminate these diseases. Other divisions of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), such as the Division of Respiratory Disease Studies (DRDS), the National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL), and the Health Hazard Evaluation Program (HHE), are also involved in the development of strategies for preventing mining-related respiratory disease.