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Validation of self-reported occupational exposures in meatpacking workers.

Authors
Lander-L; Sorock-G; Stentz-TL; Eisen-EA; Mittleman-M; Hauser-R; Perry-MJ
Source
Am J Ind Med 2009 Sep; 52(9):707-715
NIOSHTIC No.
20036278
Abstract
OBJECTIVE: The ability of workers to accurately recall exposures that occur on the day of their injury is considered a potential limitation of case-crossover studies. This study assessed validity of occupational exposures reported by uninjured workers at a Midwestern meatpacking plant. METHODS: One hundred thirty-six workers were observed for 60 min while working and then interviewed within 8 days (median 3 days) about exposures during the observation period. The level of agreement between self-reports and direct observations was assessed using kappas and intraclass correlation coefficients. RESULTS: Excellent agreement was found between observed and reported work location (kappa = 0.97, 95% CI: 0.92-1.0), task (kappa = 0.83, 95% CI: 0.76-0.91) and tools used (kappa = 0.88, 95% CI: 0.81-0.95). Personal protective equipment varied by work type and location, and agreement between observed and reported usage varied from excellent to poor for various items. Excellent agreement was found for tool sharpening (kappa = 0.89, 95% CI: 0.82-0.97); good agreement for occurrence of break during the observation period (kappa = 0.60, 95% CI: 0.45-0.74); and poor agreement for equipment malfunction, line stoppages, being tired, unusual task, unusual work method, being distracted, rushing, slipping, or falling. CONCLUSIONS: Agreement between observed and reported occupational exposures varied widely. Self-reported exposures are utilized in many occupational studies, and future exposure validity assessment studies should continue to improve retrospective study methods. Valid exposures will allow researchers to better understand injury etiology and ultimately prevent injuries from occurring.
Keywords
Meat-packing-industry; Questionnaires; Author Keywords: validation; occupational exposure; meatpacking; observation
Contact
Melissa J. Perry, Department of Environmental Health, Harvard School of Public Health, 665 Huntington Avenue, Building 1 Room 1411, Boston, MA 02115
CODEN
AJIMD8
Publication Date
20090901
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
mperry@hsph.harvard.edu
Funding Type
Grant
Fiscal Year
2009
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Grant-Number-R01-OH-008174; Grant-Number-T42-OH-008416
Issue of Publication
9
ISSN
0271-3586
Source Name
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
State
MA
Performing Organization
Harvard School of Public Health
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