Ensuring a safe and healthy work environment is crucial for employers and employees. Occupational hygienists play a vital role in identifying, evaluating, and controlling workplace hazards to protect workers’ well-being. Two important professional designations in this field are Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) and Registered Occupational Hygienist (ROH). While they share common objectives, understanding the differences between these designations can shed light on their respective roles and qualifications.
Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH):
A CIH is a globally recognized professional certification granted by the Board for Global EHS Credentialing, previously the American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH). CIHs specialize in industrial hygiene, focusing on the assessment and management of workplace hazards. They work diligently to safeguard workers’ health and promote a safe working environment.
To become a CIH, individuals must meet specific education and experience requirements. These include a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in a science or engineering discipline, relevant work experience, and successful completion of a comprehensive examination. The CIH examination covers various aspects of industrial hygiene, including risk assessment, exposure monitoring, hazard control, ventilation, toxicology, and regulatory compliance.
CIHs possess expertise in identifying and assessing occupational hazards prevalent in industries such as manufacturing, construction, mining, healthcare, and more. Their role involves conducting exposure monitoring, implementing control measures, developing health and safety programs, and ensuring regulatory compliance. CIHs often serve as valuable resources, providing education and training to workers and management on occupational hazards and risk management.
Registered Occupational Hygienist (ROH):
ROH is a professional designation used in countries such as Canada and Australia. In Canada, this is governed by the Canadian Registration Board of Occupational Hygienists (CBROH). ROHs also specialize in occupational hygiene and work to protect workers’ health and well-being by assessing and managing workplace hazards.
The specific requirements to become a ROH can vary, but they typically involve a combination of education, experience, and professional assessment. This may include a relevant degree, completion of specific training courses, demonstration of practical experience, and successful assessment by a professional registration body. For instance, the CRBOH offers a two-part written and practical examination applicants must pass to obtain their ROH designation.
ROHs share similar responsibilities with CIHs, focusing on hazard identification, risk assessment, exposure monitoring, and control measures. They contribute to the development of health and safety programs, ensure compliance with regulations, conduct incident investigations, and provide education and training to enhance awareness and safety practices in the workplace.
Continuing Professional Development:
Both CIHs and ROHs emphasize the importance of ongoing professional development. CIHs must fulfill continuing education requirements to maintain their certification, while ROHs engage in continuing professional development activities to sustain their registration. This ensures that professionals stay updated with the latest advancements and regulations in the field of occupational hygiene.
Certified Industrial Hygienists and Registered Occupational Hygienists are dedicated professionals committed to safeguarding the health and well-being of workers in various industries. While CIH is a globally recognized certification, ROH is a professional designation used in specific countries. By collaborating with employers and employees, both of these professionals contribute to creating safe and healthy work environments for everyone involved.