share this page

Congratulations to Pfizer and Shane Horgan for winning a national Responsible Care award

Congratulations to Pfizer and Shane Horgan for winning a national Responsible Care award

Published on: Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Pfizer Pharmaceuticals Ireland has recently been successful in winning a national Responsible Care Award in the area of “leading edge approaches to achieving Health & Safety excellence” for their work in the area of building process safety knowledge in their plant in Little Island.  The development team consisted of CIT’s Pat Kennedy, aided by Noel Duffy, both in the Dept of Process, Energy and Transport Engineering, who worked closely with Pfizer’s Shane Horgan (CIT chemical engineering graduate - 1999), EHS Team Lead at Little Island, supported by Michael Lynch, the site’s process safety specialist, to develop the module.

Together the team examined the material that is already part of CIT’s undergraduate chemical engineering degree, considered the implications for pharmaceutical manufacture and the particular needs of the Little Island site.  Process safety expertise can traditionally lie with limited numbers of experts on a site – this initiative educates non process safety experts on the fundamentals of process safety: outlooks and perspectives change, participation and understanding increases.  This newly developed module engages staff across all levels of the organization and is collaborative and innovative in its approach. It gives people, regardless of their role, the opportunity to understand the importance of ‘Process Safety’.

The module, CHEP8023 Chemical Process Safety, provides single subject certification at NFQ Level 8 for successful participants.  It provides a thorough grounding in the issues that must be considered when assessing the hazards arising from the processing of chemicals on an industrial level. It was devised to provide a “high-level” view of the fundamentals, an orientation to the needs of the sector and a sharp focus on local operations.  When combined with CHEP8024 Chemical Safety Applications, it leads to a Special Purpose Award: Certificate in Chemical Process Safety.

Delivery of the module embodies the site commitment to becoming an injury and incident free environment through the creation of an interdependent health and safety culture and is a great source of information, knowledge sharing, motivation and above all a platform to recognise the health and safety results achieved and build a vision for the future.  Now being delivered to the fourth participant group, it has also been adopted in Pfizer’s Ringaskiddy site.

This national award recognises the success of Pfizer and CIT’s co-operation.  It acknowledges the benefits for an organisation of continued education and staff development and highlights the potential applicability of a similar approach to other companies.