Marie Curie Should Have Worn PPE
Born in 1867, Marie Curie, was a ‘towering scientific intellect.’ As the first woman to achieve a PhD from a French university, she was a pioneer in the field of radiation research. She examined the properties of uranium and discovered the radioactive elements: radium and polonium. Marie Curie was the first woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize and, later, became the first woman to win a second Nobel Peace Prize. Not only did she establish the field of radiation therapy for cancer, but, through her research, the medical use of x-rays became a possibility.
The brilliance of Marie Curie cannot be denied. The risks, however, associated with exposure to radioactive materials had not yet been surmised so despite her great intellect, Madame Curie contracted leukemia from her prolonged workplace exposure. Marie Curie died of leukemia in 1934.
Even if the risks were known, would there have been protective constructions and personal protective equipment available? No, it was all too new. But ask yourself this question, ‘What else would Marie Curie have discovered if she had live to 90 instead of 67?’ What if she had this PPE:
Personal Protective Equipment Today
For many substances in our workplace today, we know the effects prolonged exposure beyond recommended limits yet our use of PPE is inconsistent. The reasons range from the ridiculous (it messes up my hair) to legitimate confusion (I lose dexterity with these gloves and I don’t know how I will be able to do my job). Be on the lookout for innovations in PPE to help circumvent at least the legitimate issues. Incredible solutions are everywhere:
Share What You Know
Marie Curie has taught us yet another vital lesson: Protection from workplace exposures must not be ignored. What innovative PPE are you using? Please feel free to share the PPE that works best for you with a response and a link here.