People on the move - Claudina Nogueira



Claudina Nogueira


Claudina Nogueira has worked in the broad field of occupational health since 1990, in various capacities, and serves in the following voluntary positions: Vice President for Scientific Committees of the International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH); Board member of Workplace Health Without Borders (WHWB); ExCo member of The South African Society of Occupational Medicine (SASOM); and Council member of the Southern African Institute for Occupational Hygiene (SAIOH).

She has a BSc in Life Sciences, a BSc (Hons), and a MSc in Medical Biochemistry (with distinction), all from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She also completed modules in Occupational Hygiene from what was the British Examination Board in Occupational Hygiene (BEBOH).

Claudina is currently employed as a Project/Data Manager in the Office of the Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences of the University of Pretoria.

From 2011 to 2015, Claudina was appointed as Senior Health and Safety Advisor at Anglo American in the Technical Solutions Division, based in Johannesburg. Her work at the global mining company gave her good exposure to, and a working knowledge of, safety, health and environment (SHE) issues and good practices in the mining sector, as well as the policies, procedures and standards related to the sustainability aspect, affecting workers, the environment and communities. Her knowledge was mostly acquired through her involvement, in and contribution to, operational and technical project reviews, and her assurance function (in terms of health audit components) across various commodities. Her work also involved support to Anglo American business units on issues related to occupational safety and health (OSH) and marketing of OSH services within the Anglo Group.

Claudina was employed for 21 years at the South African National Institute for Occupational Health (NIOH) in Johannesburg, first in the post of Medical Natural Scientist in a research and development post in the Section of Biochemistry Research and Toxicology, and then as Head of Section: Communication, Training and International Liaison.  Her work at the NIOH provided much experience, knowledge, and development of skills in terms of basic and applied research in various occupational health focus areas. It also provided key experience in professional development and learnings in the areas of collaboration and networking, as related to NIOH’s various international affiliations and its designation as a WHO Collaborating Centre (CC) in Occupational Health (OH). Her NIOH experience also involved her in international and outreach programmes that promoted OSH and the development of human resources in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region. While employed there, she had the following concurrent affiliations:

• 2008-August 2011 – Global Manager of the Global Plan of Action (GPA) on Workers’ Health Objective 1: Devise and implement policy instruments on workers’ health of the Global Network Plan (2009-2012) of the WHO CC in OH

• 2005-2008 – Global Manager of Activity Area 6: Communication and Networking of the GPA (2005-2009) of the WHO CC in OH

• 1996-August 2011 – Administrator (South Africa) of the Fogarty International Center/University of Michigan Training Programme in Occupational and Environmental Health in Southern Africa

For the past 12 years, Claudina has been involved with ICOH activities. She was the scientific coordinator for the ICOH2009 Congress and worked closely with the scientific chairs (Dr Marilyn Fingerhut – USA, and Prof Mary Ross – SA) in developing and implementing the Congress’ scientific programme. She was involved in organising special sessions and/or oral paper sessions for ICOH2009 (Cape Town, South Africa), ICOH2012 (Cancún, Mexico), ICOH2015 (Seoul, Republic of Korea) and ICOH2018 (Dublin, Ireland), and also contributed to the respective scientific programmes of these congresses in various capacities, e.g. reviewing of abstracts, chairing of sessions, and adjudicating student poster presentations. She served two consecutive terms as ICOH Board member (2012-2015; 2015-2018); and is a member (and was secretary until May 2018) of the ICOH Working Group on Occupational Infectious Agents (WGOIA) and the ICOH Scientific Committee on Occupational Safety and Health in Mining (SCMinOSH). As an ICOH Board member, she served on the ICOH Task Group on Social Determinants and Occupational Health and on the ICOH Committee on Ethics and Transparency. Under the latter, she contributed to the update of the ICOH Code of Ethics for Occupational Health Professionals (third edition).

At the recent ICOH2018 Congress in Dublin, Ireland, Claudina was elected as ICOH Vice President for Scientific Committees for the current triennium (2018-2021).

Claudina has co-authored two book chapters (on asbestos toxicity and manganese health effects) and several scientific publications. Her research interests include inflammation and cytokines, metal toxicity, chemical exposures, mineral dusts and fibres, molecular epidemiology and toxicology, education and training in occupational and environmental health, and occupational health and safety in the mining sector.

Her writing and linguistic skills (Portuguese as home language, fluency in English and Afrikaans, intermediate-level Spanish and basic-level French) have been advantageous for her partnership and coordination work in occupational health. She considers herself to be a life-long learner who enjoys collaboration – engaging proactively with stakeholders of the disciplines she supports, and establishing professional links that can enhance her contributions to occupational health. A favourite quote: “Expect the best, plan for the worst, and prepare to be surprised.” – Denis Waitley

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