The generation and reporting of occupational health data in the United States was reviewed. Information pertaining to occupational health data and potential chemical, physical, and biological hazards could be derived from the National Occupational Hazards Survey of NIOSH, and actual occupational health data could be derived from the National Health Interview Survey of the National Center for Health Statistics, the disability award files of the Social Security Administration, and state maintained death certificates. These systems were used to generate the occupational hazards and health effect information needed for NIOSH evaluations. Surveys were undertaken by NIOSH between 1972 and 1974 and again from 1981 to 1983 to assess workplace hazards, including the types of chemicals being used on site. The Health Interview Survey provided an ongoing assessment of household members conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics. Social Security disability records were useful for determination of disability patterns exhibited by workers in specific industries and occupations. Use of the mortality files was complicated by state to state differences with regard to information included on industry and occupation. Uses of the surveillance data were discussed with special emphasis on dermatological problems. Questions and answers from a dermatologic disease and chronic trauma workshop were included.