StanDerm: Common European standards on occupational skin disease
prevention and patient management
COST Action TD1206


Setting the standards for excellence

07 August 2017 | StanDerm’s achievements recognized in the media

StanDerm's commitment to set EU-wide standards for the prevention and treatment of OSD including OSC has been well reflected by the media. The media pointed out that thanks to the joint efforts of about 140 experts from 31 EU countries a position paper containing a proposal for EU-wide standards on the subject matter has been developed and is now available for key stakeholders. In its report about the final StanDerm workshop in May 2017, the journal Der Deutsche Dermatologe however also mentions that although the EU recognizes the prevention of OSD as a top priority problem, the round-table participants of the final workshop raised doubts as to political commitment within the EU to implement the standards in the near future. Hence, efforts shall continue to raise awareness and reach a change of prevention culture at all levels.

In need of standards for OSD patients

28 June 2017 | StanDerm´s final publication now available online

The interdisciplinary network of experts from 31 countries represented in StanDerm takes a stand on the urgent need to implement evidence-based standards for the benefit of the millions of patients affected by skin disorder due to their work. The position paper included in the publication aims at closing the gap of lacking coherent and standardized OSD prevention strategies. Two further articles underpin the findings of the position paper by highlighting that different national legal situation impede OSD prevention approaches. This includes a lack of workers´ education programmes, the cumbersome notification process and the massive under-reporting still prevailing in many European countries alike. The publication not only aims at raising awareness of colleagues yet unaware on the importance of early detection and targeted patient management but also at drawing attention to this topic to key stakeholders with a view to bringing it forward on national and European health agendas. Hence, printed copies of the publication will be disseminated to a range of stakeholders throughout the forthcoming months.

OSH World Congress 2017 Singapore

26 June 2017 | StanDerm's OSD position paper accepted

Great news: StanDerm’s postion paper „Minimum Standards on Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment of Occupational and Work-related Skin Diseases in Europe“ has been accepted as oral presentation at the leading global occupational safety and health congress XXI World Congress on Safety and Health at Work(3-6 Sept. 2017) in Singapore, at which over 3.000 experts from around the Globe are expected. The WCSH will be held from 6-9 September 2017 in Singapore. During the 2-hour session on “Prevention Pays! The role of accident insurance and the return to work reintegration”, scheduled for 4 September, José Hernán Alfonso and Patricia Weinert will present the challenges of OSD and call for OSD minimum standards. This is a great opportunity to give StanDerm a platform to communicate and to discuss the Action’s key concern with experts and stakeholders. Follow: #WorldCongress2017 | @WorldCongressSH

StanDerm's grand finale

23 May 2017 | Successful final workshop 18-19 May 2017 (Berlin) with major achievements

Four years of intensive work of the COST Action TD 1206 "StanDerm" have come to an end. The final workshop was held from 18-19 May 2017 in Berlin with almost 70 participants from 21 countries at the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV) premises.   Throughout the lifetime of the Action, the pan-European network has been growing with initially 25 countries and over time extended to 31 countries actively being involved in StanDerm. The achievements but also challenges ahead pertaining to the field of occupational skin diseases, including skin cancer, are well reflected in the presentations made by the chairs during the final event.    The position paper on the (minimum) standards on the prevention, diagnosis and management of occupational skin diseases (OSD), discussed and commented at a podium discussion with Union and Social Security representatives from Brussels, is an important outcome of the Action. It is a blueprint for how to deal with prevention and management of word-related (WRDS) and occupational skin diseases as this is still often not sufficiently followed. The paper will be published in a JEADV supplement in June 2017 and made available to all specialized physicians involved in occupational care, stakeholders, organizations and industry involved in preventing WRSD and OSD.    

Strong concerns on self-testing for contact sensitization to hair dyes

22 March 2017 | Statement by StanDerm

StanDerm expresses its concern vis-à-vis the position of the European Commission with regard to skin testing methods recommended by the manufacturers of oxidative hair dyes. Different views have been expressed and StanDerm fully supports the position taken by the hairdressing social partners (Coiffure EU and UNI Europa), namely to abandon the self-testing method and to replace it with a scientifically based questionnaire, and very importantly, to consult a dermatologist/allergologist. StanDerm adopted the following statement. In order to find out whether consumers are allergic to certain dyes and colouring substances, manufacturers recommend that a self-test is carried out before product use. In addition to the methodological and scientific concerns of the social partners on the self-test method, it appears that a significant proportion of the hairdressers applying this method are unable to interpret its results nor do they have the appropriate training made available. The social partners call for the abolition of the self-testing method.


Occupational skin diseases

In Europe, occupational skin diseases (OSD) represent up to 40% of occupational diseases. OSD related costs exceed 5 billion €/year by loss of productivity. There are still only a number of isolated efforts of OSD prevention in some countries and there is no coordinated action between the stakeholders at national and international levels. Notification of and recording of OSD is lacking. Surveillance and diagnostics of OSD are hampered by lack of common monitoring of new allergens in workplaces. The EU Commission therefore defined lacking prevention of OSD a top priority problem.

During its 4-year lifetime, COST Action „StanDerm“ developed evidence-based common European standards on OSD prevention and patient management to fill this gap. It also looked into the aetiology of OSD, individual susceptibility, epidemiological surveillance and transnational and applied clinical research topics (see publications). The interdisciplinary research network comprises over 100 experts from dermatology, epidemiology, occupational medicine and health education.

While the Action ended in May 2017, we will continue feeding this page with information, including via Twitter. Follow us!

About the Action