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Occupations with High Obesity Prevalence in Washington State

Categories: Construction, Emergency Response/Public Sector, Safety and Health Data, Smoking, Total Worker Health, Transportation

If work and the workplace contribute to poor health behaviors, should employers attempt to improve those behaviors?  It likely is in the employer’s best interest to do so.

Poor health behaviors can lead to chronic disease.  Workers with chronic disease may be at higher risk for workplace injury, have more absenteeism, and diminished productivity at work. Once injured, workers with chronic diseases take a longer time to return to work.  So the best strategy would be for employers to promote healthy behaviors to prevent the occurrence of these chronic diseases.

World Cancer Day – Cancer Detectives in the Workplace

Categories: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing, Cancer, Construction, Emergency Response/Public Sector, Manufacturing, Mining, Transportation

Today is World Cancer Day. Around the world, 12.7 million people are diagnosed with cancer every year, and the number is expected to increase due to the growth and aging of the population, as well as reductions in childhood mortality and deaths from infectious diseases in developing countries (ACS 2011). Cancer is the leading cause of death in developed countries and the second leading cause of death in developing countries.

Cancer is a group of diseases characterized by uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells. If the spread is not controlled, it can result in death.

Reducing Taxicab Homicides

Categories: Motor Vehicle Safety, Service Sector, Transportation, Violence, Wholesale and Retail Trade

Photo of the type of camera used in New York City and Seattle taxicabs.

Taxicab drivers face one of the highest homicide rates of any occupation.  While rates of homicide have declined among the general working population (in 2010, 0.37 per 100,000 employed), they remain high in the taxicab industry (7.4 per 100,000 employed for the same year).  In the early 1990s, bullet-resistant partitions were the dominant safety equipment in use in taxicabs.  Currently, cameras are in greater use and have become the security equipment of choice for industry regulators and taxicab fleet operators.

New research from NIOSH examines the effectiveness of partitions and security cameras in reducing homicides among taxicab drivers.  This is the first study to methodically collect data from a nationally representative sample of the largest taxicab cities.  Data was collected over a 15-year time span (1996-2010) for 26 cities (8 cities using security cameras, 7 cities using partitions, and 11 control cities that used neither cameras nor partitions) and allows for comparison of homicide rates pre- and post-installation of cameras.  The study was published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

How Does Work Affect the Health of the U.S. Population? Free Data from the 2010 NHIS-OHS Provides the Answers

Categories: Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing, Construction, Emergency Response/Public Sector, Health care, Manufacturing, Mining, Oil and Gas, Safety and Health Data, Service Sector, Transportation, Wholesale and Retail Trade

You may have some hypotheses about how work affects the health of the U.S. population, but collecting data from a nationally representative sample is expensive and time-consuming. What if there was free data available at your fingertips? You’re in luck!

NIOSH sponsored an Occupational Health Supplement (OHS) to the 2010 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), and the data is publicly available. See the NIOSH Topic Page for more information. Over 17 thousand current and recent U.S. workers supplied information on their industry, occupation, and the workplace health conditions and exposures listed below. Initial results have been published in the June issue of the American Journal of Industrial Medicine. We have provided a summary of the research and links to the articles below. What novel associations might you be able to find concerning your area of interest? We would also like your input on topics to cover in the 2015 survey. See the end of this post for information on how to suggest ideas.

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