Stoffenmanager exposure model: Company-specific exposure assessments using a Bayesian methodology.
van de Ven, P.
TNO Kwaliteit van Leven
The web-based tool "Stoffenmanager" was initially developed to assist small- and medium-sized enterprises in the Netherlands to make qualitative risk assessments and to provide advice on control at the workplace. The tool uses a mechanistic model to arrive at a "Stoffenmanager score" for exposure. In a recent study it was shown that variability in exposure measurements given a certain Stoffenmanager score is still substantial. This article discusses an extension to the tool that uses a Bayesian methodology for quantitative workplace/scenario-specific exposure assessment. This methodology allows for real exposure data observed in the company of interest to be combined with the prior estimate (based on the Stoffenmanager model). The output of the tool is a company-specific assessment of exposure levels for a scenario for which data is available. The Bayesian approach provides a transparent way of synthesizing different types of information and is especially preferred in situations where available data is sparse, as is often the case in small- and medium sized-enterprises. Real-world examples as well as simulation studies were used to assess how different parameters such as sample size, difference between prior and data, uncertainty in prior, and variance in the data affect the eventual posterior distribution of a Bayesian exposure assessment.
To reference this document use:
Journal of occupational and environmental hygiene, 7 (4), 216-223