Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health in the Border Areas of Euro-Arctic Barents Region: A Review of 30-Year Russian–Norwegian Research Collaboration Outcomes
AuthorChashchin, Valery; Gorbanev, Sergei; Thomassen, Yngvar; Nieboer, Evert; Ellingsen, Dag; Syurin, Sergei; Nikanov, Alaksandr; Chashchin, Max; Odland, Jon Øyvind
This year marks 30 years of close collaboration between a consortium of institutions, namely, the Northwest Public Health Research Center, Saint-Petersburg (NWPHRC); the Institute of Community Medicine (ICM) of UiT (The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø); the National Institute of Occupational Health (NIOH), Oslo; the University Hospital of Northern Norway (UNN) at Tromsø; and McMaster University (MU), Hamilton, ON, Canada. During the early years of cooperation, Dr. Chashchin was the Director of the Scientific Laboratory of the North-West Public Health Centre Branch of the NWPHRC located in the town of Kirovks in the Murmansk Region. The primary focus of this long-standing collaboration was to assess and address issues that are important for maintaining the health of the population living in the border areas of Russia and Norway and included the reduction of occupational health risks among workers employed in mining, metallurgical and machine-building enterprises located in the north-western region of Norway and the adjoining Kola Peninsula in Russia. These industrial activities constituted essential components of the local industries. The ongoing Russian–Norwegian cooperation in the field of occupational medicine is an excellent example of the effective combination of intellectual potential and research technologies of multiple countries. It has resulted in the development of a scientifically based set of measures for practical implementation, contributing to the improvement of working conditions and preservation of the health of workers employed at enterprises where the joint research was carried out.