1678d Occupational health in ireland as a profession – the last 50 years. while ramazinni is the grandfather of occupational health, is there an irish physician who is the great grandfather of occupational health?

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The Faculty of Occupational Medicine, Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) was founded in 1976. Its objective was to advance the science and practice of occupational medicine and to promote education, study and research in the specialty. Its core membership has all-Ireland representation, stemming from the College’s Royal Charters in the seventeenth century. The Faculty has been an integral part of RCPI since its inception. The Faculty was involved in occupational medicine being recognised as both an Irish and European Medical Specialty. It developed the Licentiate and Membership Examinations which became sought after qualifications at home and abroad. It has held annual examinations in Ireland since 1983 and holds annual overseas examinations in Malaysia since 1995 and more recently in the Al Ain. The Faculty initiated and maintains a comprehensive training scheme for its specialist doctors in training. This paper gives a chronological account of the activities of the Faculty, from the mid1970’s up to current times. It is based on the archive records of the Faculty, including the minutes of the Board meetings of the Faculty and the College (RCPI). It covers that period of change that affected many disciplines involved in occupational health i.e. nurses, hygienists, toxicologists, safety officers, psychologists and others, as well as the changes that the factory doctor underwent as he/she became a 21 st century occupational physician. The role of the Faculty is to maintain integrity and professional competence of doctors engaged in occupational medicine. It operates the professional competence scheme on behalf of the Medical Council for specialist occupational health physicians.

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