National Worker Health Group: Boeing Employee Health And Safety Programs The Best Prescription

The Boeing Company was honored today for its employee health and safety programs by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM), which awarded Boeing its Corporate Health Achievement Award for 1998.

ACOEM is the world's largest organization of occupational and environmental physicians. The group is dedicated to promoting and protecting the health of workers through preventive services, clinical care, research, and educational programs. Their Corporate Health Achievement Award recognizes the best corporate health and safety practices in the nation. It was presented today at the American Occupational Health Conference.

The Boeing Company was selected to receive the award after an ACOEM evaluation team made a two-day, onsite examination of the company facilities near the company headquarters in Seattle, Wash. According to Dr. Steve Schwendeman, leader of the evaluation team, the team was impressed by the scope and quality of the Boeing programs. In a letter to Boeing, the ACOEM Board of Examiners stated: "Your company's employee health, safety and environmental management programs are considered to be a model of excellence - an example for other companies to follow."

ACOEM singled out for particular praise four of the many programs and processes Boeing carries out to provide a safe and healthful workplace and to protect the environment:

  • The Health and Safety Institute at Boeing promotes training that relates to the safety and health of employees and helps build effective relationships between union stewards, supervisors, and all other employees. The institute is funded by Boeing and jointly staffed by managers and representatives of the International Association of Machinists, the labor union representing the company's largest group of represented employees.
  • National and International Health Services. Boeing world travelers and expatriates have a complete program of immunizations and up-to-date travel advisory information available to them at no charge. In addition, Boeing ensures that employees who are injured or become ill in a foreign country receive appropriate medical attention. "Overseas employees and their families are not left to fend for themselves," noted Schwendeman.
  • The Occupational Health Examination Physicians' Guide provides detailed guidance for physicians examining Boeing employees. To ensure consistent quality of care in a wide variety of locations and circumstances, the Boeing medical staff compiled all of the relevant regulations, medical tests, and information about the potentially dangerous chemical and physical agents which employees may encounter.
  • The Office Ergonomics Web site leads employees through an online workstation self-check right at their desks. Other features include illustrated explanations of ergonomic risks and preventive strategies, and links to other Internet sites that provide ergonomics education. This Web site is part of a comprehensive ergonomics training program.

In accepting the award for Boeing, Dr. Fred Tilton, the company's medical director, said: "Boeing is not only one of the world's largest manufacturing concerns. It is also a highly personal company that cares about the health and well-being of each employee.

"Boeing is proud of its record of caring for people and the environment, and we are committed to continuing to build on that tradition in the 21 st century," Tilton said.

Because ACOEM considers a company's long-term track record, Boeing operations considered for the award were limited to those that existed prior to the merger with Rockwell's defense and space divisions in 1996 and the merger with McDonnell Douglas in 1997. ACOEM gave Boeing the award in its category for U.S. manufacturers employing more than 5,000 people.

With $48 billion in sales in 1997, The Boeing Company is the largest aerospace company in the world. More than 238,000 people work for Boeing and its subsidiaries at locations throughout the United States and around the world.