Counting Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses: Taking Steps to Close the Gap
There is widespread recognition of the need to improve surveillance of non-fatal work-related injuries and both fatal and non-fatal work-related illnesses in the U.S. Calls for improved surveillance figure prominently in the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) reviews of NIOSH research, recommendations of NORA sector councils and congressional reviews. While calls for improved surveillance are many, few reports have identified concrete next steps for action.
The CSTE Occupational Health Surveillance Subcommittee has convened two meetings, in 2009 and 2013, bringing together state and federal surveillance experts, researchers, and key stakeholders to identify next steps in building a national infrastructure for surveillance of work-related injuries and illnesses. Each of these meetings focused on the need for a coordinated, comprehensive, long-range approach rather than a set of isolated surveillance projects. The goals of both meetings were to update participants on efforts to improve the BLS and OSHA data collection systems for non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses, to increase policymakers’ and other stakeholders’ understanding of the role of the public health system in addressing surveillance gaps, and to identify specific recommendations for using multiple data sources to improve surveillance of non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses. At the 2013 meeting, participants reviewed federal and state accomplishments since 2009 and updated and expanded recommendations for improving surveillance.
For more information about Count Them All, please contact Erin Simms. Click here to view other occupational health activities.
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