Dhiti 2

Dhitinut Ratnapradipa, PhD
Associate Professor,
Dept. of Health Education and Recreation,
Southern Illinois University

Visiting Partner Dhiti Ratnapradipa understands that despite recent high-profile cases of lab injuries and fatalities, worker injury and safety in university laboratories remains an important issue for many campuses. In particular, smaller research universities face obstacles in ensuring laboratory safety including time, funding, and the recruitment and training of laboratory managers. Each university establishes its own laboratory protocols and safety training is not always standardized, even within schools, units, and departments. University faculty, staff, and students are therefore all at risk. Additionally, students working in university laboratory settings are not covered by federal OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) regulations because they are under direct supervision but are not regular full-time employees.

Dhiti’s Current Project: The Effects of Laboratory Culture on Safety Practices at a Midwest University Using a Risk Communication Approach

The goal of this project is to examine the effectiveness of current risk communication approaches within the context of organizational behavior of individual labs. It will result in a written evaluation with recommendations for improving risk communication practices within university laboratory settings. Examples of risk communication materials to be revised include posters and handouts with recommendations for optimal placement within specific laboratories.

Dhiti’s Past Project: Promoting Laboratory Safety and Injury Prevention: A Pilot Online Training for Use at Universities

The goal of this project was to aid in promoting and standardizing laboratory safety training at the Southern Illinois University. Dhiti produced an online computer training course for all university laboratory workers. The online nature of this program allows campus safety officers and lab managers to track the completion of safety training by new hires and students, as well as the completion of yearly refresher courses.