Occupational heatstroke and industrial injuries

Updated: 2022-08-05
In a high-temperature environment, when the body produces significantly greater heat than it dissipates, the heat storage will continue to increase. Once it exceeds the body's self-regulation ability, it will cause heatstroke, such as the dysfunction of the central nervous system and the cardiovascular system, due to an imbalance of heat as well as disorder of water and salt metabolism in the human body.
According to the characteristics of meteorological conditions in the workplace, high-temperature work is generally divided into three types: work in high temperature and intensive thermal radiation, work in high temperature and high humidity, and outdoor work in summer.
In varying degrees, heatstroke is categorized as heat cramp, heat exhaustion and thermoplegia. As heatstroke is the result of the continuous accumulation of significantly greater heat produced than dissipated in the body, warning signs of heatstroke can normally be observed before severe heatstroke occurs.
Seeking medical treatment when warning signs appear can prevent further development of heatstroke and save lives.
Occupational heatstroke is an occupational disease stipulated in laws, and can be identified as industrial injury. If employees suffer from sequelae that affects their working capabilities after treatment, they should apply for another labor ability appraisal.
According to the 4th article of the Regulations on Industrial Injury Insurance, when an employee has an industrial injury, the employer should take measures to make sure the injured employee gets timely treatment. 
Article 14 states that if an employee has one of certain symptoms, it should be recognized as an industrial injury, and that those suffering from an occupational disease should be recognized as suffering from an industrial injury.
Article 17: If an employee has an accident-related injury or is diagnosed as suffering from an occupational disease in accordance with the provisions of the Law on the Prevention and Control of Occupational Diseases, the employer should apply for ascertainment of the injury to the administrative department of social insurance in the region within 30 days from the date of the injury or the date of diagnosis as an occupational disease.
Pursuant to article 21, if an employee suffers from an industrial injury and has a disability that affects their capability to work after treatment, they should be assessed as to their working capability.
Protective measures for high-temperature work
For employers: 
Establish and improve the working system of heatstroke prevention
Adjust working hours according to the forecast temperature and provide sufficient cooling drinks
For employees:
Take personal protection and wear heat-resistant clothes.
An occupational health examination is needed before employment to prevent anyone with occupational contraindications from engaging in high-temperature work.