Ergonomic Intervention in Pharmaceutical Distribution Work in India using the Principles of Anthropometry
Authors: Pallavi Murarka, Manjit Chauhan
Abstract: Background:Workplace ergonomics deals in fitting workplace conditions and job demands to the capabilities of its user population. Ergonomic interventions are the measures taken to create a more user-friendly workplace following the ergonomic principles. Anthropometry, the study of statistical variation of human body dimensions and its implications on design, needs to be considered while designing equipment and workplaces and doing the ergonomic intervention. Objective:This study aimed to conduct an ergonomic intervention for workers in a pharmaceutical distribution unit to reduce the frequency of bending and kneeling postures. Method:The ergonomic intervention was done in three stages. In stage one, an assessment of work was done to understand work postures, work pattern, and duration of work. In stage two, a workstation was designed using ergonomics and anthropometry. In stage three, the workstation was introduced to workers. Intervention design:Using the principles of ergonomics, anthropometry, and guidelines for standing work, a standing workstation was designed. Standing measurements for elbow height, eye height, and length and height of arm reach front and arm reach side were considered. 5th, 95th, or 50th percentile of anthropometric measurements for the male population were utilized based on the anthropometric guidelines for reach, clearance, and range of motion and guidelines for designing a standing workstation.Result: The ergonomically designed worktable consisted of two primary components: an elevated worksurface and two side tables attached to it. The elevated horizontal platform or main worktable helped in eliminating excessive back and legs bending, twisting, and squatting on the floor. Two side tables provided space to keep packed goods. Other components of the worktable were footrests and storage space. Footrests were provided to support the body while working in a standing position. Drawers and shelves helped in storage and organizing the workplace. Nylon bushes were given to stabilize the workstation on uneven floors. Foldable side tables and removable overhead shelf provided flexibility in shifting and maintaining the workstation.
Keywords: Anthropometry, Ergonomic Intervention, Workstation design, posture
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