Authors: Nogueira C, Rees D, Murray J

Source: Occup Health Southern Africa, 15 WAHSA Special Issue, Nov 2009: 27-35.


Mining and other dust-generating activities are widespread and growing in Southern African region; silicosis and silica- related diseases are thus common. There is a strong association between silica exposure and tuberculosis (TB), particularly where background TB and HIV rates are high, as in Southern Africa. Controlling silica exposure is thus an important public health issue in the region.

Project 7 of the Work and Health in Southern Africa (WAHSA) Programme was action- driven, and the main goals were the reduction of silica dust- exposed workers.

Phase1 (2004-2008) of Project 7 concentrated on establishing and strengthening resource complexes in the region, improving capacity to measure and control dust; implementing interventions in the quarry industry; and improving prevention of tuberculosis and case finding.