The health of its employees, suppliers, visitors and neighbours is a priority for ERAMET. This ambition was set down in the Group’s formal health policy that was adopted in 2007 and reasserted three years later in the sustainable development policy. ERAMET seeks detailed, in-depth knowledge of the health risks related to its activities in order to make sure they are controlled as fully as possible. The Group also intends to play an active part in promoting individual and collective health actions.
ERAMET's health policy
- Reduce the health risks related to work or the impact of ERAMET's activities and products by ensuring everyone makes it their concern.
- Ensure compliance with local regulations and current standards as well as the Group's own health standards.
- Give everyone responsibility for protecting health by putting out clear, transparent information on health risks and the relevant prevention methods.
- Contribute actively to scientific work on the risks inherent in processes and products.
- Roll out practical prevention actions.
In addition, through the implementation of its sustainable development policy, the Group defined annual and multi-year goals that factor in health aspects.
Rollout through a dual network
The implementation of ERAMET’s health policy and the related actions is coordinated by the Group’s corporate physician in cooperation with a dual network made up, on one hand, of healthcare professionals (Group or inter-company physicians and nurses, independent medical experts, health insurance companies, etc.) and, on the other hand, of unit safety and/or environment correspondents.
Connections are set up to share knowledge and/or skills between ERAMET’s health, safety, environment and human resources departments. This leads to meetings between the teams at dedicated seminars or in "profession clubs", for example.
Guaranteeing workplace health
A system for managing medical emergencies is in place on every ERAMET site. It includes a set of equipment, human resources, procedures and training.
Risk assessment and exposure measurement in the workplace
Workstation risks are assessed on every Group site and as close to the ground as possible. Exposure measurements are also carried out whenever necessary. This enables the Group to roll out individual or collective preventive measures.
Medical monitoring of employees
Depending on the entity, ERAMET monitors its employees’ health through specific structures or through carefully selected inter-company structures. In all cases, this monitoring is adapted in terms of content and frequency to the job type and the identified risks. It may also include the dosage of biological exposure indicators.
For this assessment, ERAMET has designed health monitoring standards that bring together the best international practices for spotting risks at an early stage. They are developed using the work of professional organisations and independent experts in particular.
Medical monitoring, together with the workstation studies carried out on the ground, are the pillars of occupational disease prevention.
Quality of Working Life
Among the factors that make up Quality of Working Life, preventing psycho-social risks is a priority for the Group, with a programme that has been in operation since 2010. Following an assessment (WOCCQ-type survey) and training phase, every French and New Caledonian site concerned put forward action plans for spotting at-risk situations, supporting change (particularly with respect to new projects) and helping people in difficulty.
Developing knowledge of products, controlling and reducing our health impacts
Keeping up with science and contributing to research
ERAMET contributes to the work of trade organisations in order to keep its knowledge up to date on the products it uses, emits or makes, and to track developments in workplace and environmental health.
For instance, the Group takes part in the work done by NIPERA (the science branch of the Nickel Institute) and the International Manganese Institute (IMnI) on occupational exposure limits and toxicological data on nickel and manganese compounds. This enables it to enhance and update the health and safety standards that it draws up and shares.
Controlling our products’ health impacts
ERAMET uses, processes, emits, produces and markets substances, compounds and products that may have an impact on health if they are not controlled. ERAMET implements the resources needed to gain knowledge of their properties, based on a range of current legislation including European REACH regulations and internal policies and procedures. The top priorities are CMR (Carcinogenic, Mutagenic or Toxic to Reproduction) substances and hazardous chemicals. The Group’s corporate physician is particularly involved in the validation circuit for safety data sheets on its products.
Controlling our environmental impacts
ERAMET strives to foresee, appraise and control any health consequences of its industrial activities near its units.
To do so, since 2006 the Group has used EraGreen, its environmental performance measurement system, as well as a large amount of equipment for processing and monitoring its water or air emissions.
It also conducts various health studies, including baseline studies for projects such as Weda Bay Nickel (Indonesia) and Maboumine (Gabon), but also in-depth epidemiological studies like those in progress in Moanda (Gabon).
Promoting health for all
Information, awareness and prevention
Businesses have a growing role in promoting health and ERAMET is active in this area too. Its information, awareness and prevention programmes include actions on cardiovascular diseases, addictions, infectious diseases (HIV, malaria) and visual comfort.
Access to quality healthcare for employees and their dependents worldwide
ERAMET ensures that all of its employees and their families benefit from quality medical treatment for both emergency and routine care. To do so, the Group identifies and assesses the needs of each site and takes actions in regions where healthcare structures and skills are lacking.
This is the case, for example, with Marcel Abéké Hospital in Moanda, Gabon, which provides medicine, surgery, maternity and emergency services for the employees of the Group’s subsidiary COMILOG, as well as their dependents and part of the population.
Moreover, ERAMET pays special attention to its population of frequent travellers and expatriates. These are covered by the MedFit programme, which provides full medical monitoring in line with the issues relating to their mobility. They also benefit from training carried out jointly by the Security and Health departments.
Taking part in the fight against major pandemics
The fight against HIV and malaria is one of the United Nations’ millennium development goals. ERAMET particularly contributes by:
- Rolling out the Gamma plan, which was launched in 2006 and includes communication, health education, prevention and management actions for people affected by HIV in Gabon;
- Taking part in the eradication of malaria-bearing mosquitoes (wiping out stagnant water and breeding places, spraying insecticide);
- Developing an online training module on malaria for employees traveling to at-risk zones.