In the circular economy, employees may be exposed to biological hazards. GESTIS Biological Agents Database is an online tool containing information for the safe handling of biological agents at the workplace, e.g. the required technical, organizational and personal protection measures in the case of targeted activities in laboratories and biotechnology. It contains data on about 18 000 biological agents. Most datasheets comprise basic information, like risk group and protective measures, while the extended datasheets provide much more detailed information. They contain additional data on occupational health and safety (including first aid), morphology and physiology, occurrence, pathogenicity, disease, epidemiology, and legislation.
Information on activities in sectors where biological agents may occur, so-called “non- targeted” activities, as waste collection or sewage disposal, can be found in activity data sheets. The activity datasheets already address some aspects relevant for circular economy, as building refurbishment and agricultural/forestry topics. In the future, this subject will be further expanded. The database mainly focuses on workplace health and safety professionals and is a valuable aid when creating risk assessments.
GESTIS Biological Agents Database is a joint project of the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV), the German Social Accident Insurance Institution for the Raw Materials and Chemical Industry (BG RCI) and the Federal Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS).
It can be accessed free of charge and without registration here.
Dr. Conrad Wagner