Travail informel au Bénin : Expositions professionnelles et conséquences sanitaires chez les forgerons-ferblantiers à Cotonou

Abstract : Context and objectives: In Benin, the "informal sector" represents almost 80% of workers with a predominance of craftsmen, followed by the modern private sector (11%) and the civil service (9%). The socio-professional situation of craftsmen is characterized by the lack of personal or collective protective equipment, exposure to physical and harmful chemical substances and a lack of social security. The main objective of this thesis was to study the impact of working conditions on the health of tinsmiths in the informal economy in Cotonou, Benin. This research also allowed us to evaluate the blood impregnation of trace elements in tinsmiths compared to the background levels of the non-occupationally exposed male population of Cotonou. This part of the study required a first survey of 70 blood donors in Cotonou, in order to propose reference values for 29 trace elements. Method: A cross-sectional study was carried out in Midombô on the site of the tinsmiths in the 3rd district of Cotonou in Benin. Study population: A total of 84 workshop managers out of 102 gave their agreement to participate in the study of work places and conditions (participation rate of 82.4 %). Among the 251 tinsmiths working in the 102 workshops investigated, 135 agreed to go to the “Erasmus” health center (53.8%) for free medical care. In this population, there were 31 apprentices (23.0 %) and 104 craftsmen or master craftsmen (77.0 %). Results: Noise levels greater than 85 decibels were observed in 58.3% of the workshops, with an average working time of 10 hours per day. This exposure can be the cause of hearing impairment (mild to severe) observed in 99, 3% of the cases. Direct exposure to metal fumes and dust (38.52 %) and the consumption of food at the workplace are the cause of metallic impregnation. For 6 trace elements, more than 20 % of the tinsmiths had blood concentrations above the reference values of the general population. These elements, classified from the lowest to the highest level of impregnation were molybdenum, copper, strontium, tin, antimony, and lead, respectively. Approximately 71% of the tinsmiths had lead levels above the 95th percentile of concentrations found in unexposed populations in Cotonou. 83% of the workers who were under 18 years of age had blood lead levels ≥ 100 μg / L. Uncorrected visual acuity (> 20%) and untreated arterial hypertension (27.4 %) were detected in the participating tinsmiths. Conclusion: Informal workers are in a very vulnerable situation due to poor social protection and a high level of exposure to occupational risks. Given the large number of employees in the informal sector, improving the occupational health and safety of these workers should help to strengthen human capital and reduce the incidence of occupational diseases that are still poorly documented.
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Brice Yedomon. Travail informel au Bénin : Expositions professionnelles et conséquences sanitaires chez les forgerons-ferblantiers à Cotonou. Médecine humaine et pathologie. Université de Limoges, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016LIMO0108⟩. ⟨tel-01544030⟩

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