A large number of people use devices such as computers, laptops, tablets and smartphones for work on a daily basis. These individuals are commonly referred to as users of display screen equipment (DSE) or visual display units (VDUs).
In addition, prolonged use of devices may cause health issues such as eyestrain, back pain, and repetitive strain injuries. To protect DSE users, employers are required to take certain measures by law.
What is DSE and what are the regulations associated with DSE?
Any device with a display screen, whether alphanumeric or graphic, is considered display screen equipment. This includes desktop computers, laptops, mobile devices, and tablet computers. Health and Safety Regulations (Display Screen Equipment) 1992 were drafted (and amended in 2002) to protect users of display screen equipment (DSE) who use it for extended periods of time each day.
Specifically, the regulations specify how employers are required to protect DSE users from musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).
What DSE measures are recommended for employers?
In accordance with the regulations on display screen equipment, employers should:
Identify and reduce risks associated with workstations
Ensure that appropriate risk controls are in place
Providing information and training
Offer eye examinations upon request
Provide spectacles upon request (if necessary)
Revise assessment if user or setup requirements change
How does DSE pose a risk?
Extensive use of display screen equipment entails several risks:
It has been suggested that these health issues may be caused by poorly designed workstations or improper usage of DSE, including overuse.
Sometimes, it is difficult to pinpoint the exact cause and there may be a combination of factors involved.
Why should you become DSE-compliant?
Employers may benefit from:
Compliance with DSE regulations ensures that you do not violate health and safety laws. We can assist you in ensuring you remain compliant with DSE regulations, but compliance with DSE regulations is only the beginning.
The goal of your program is to minimize workplace risks as much as possible, both for those who regularly use DSE and those who occasionally do so.