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Occupational injuries and fatalities among health care workers in the United States.
Scand J Work, Environ & Health 1992 Jun; 18(Suppl 2):88-89
The incidence of fatal and nonfatal injuries in the United States (US) was examined among three components of the health care industry: hospitals, nursing homes and personal care facilities, and offices of health practitioners. Injury data from the Supplementary Data System of the Bureau of Labor Statistics were complied for 18 states with similar reporting requirements for the period from 1980 through 1984. The National Traumatic Occupational Fatality data base was used to identify fatal occupational injuries. The findings indicated that of all US health care workers, employees of nursing and personal care facilities were at the highest risk of job related injuries. Hospital workers were at the highest risk of suffering a fatal injury, and the potential for work related injuries or fatalities for employees in health practitioners' offices was relatively low. Sprains and strains due to over exertion were more frequent than any other type of injury over the entire spectrum of the health care industry. The occupations of workers most frequently injured were nurse's aides, registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, and cleaners. Physicians were more likely to die from work related injuries (19%) than were registered nurses (17%), nurse's aides (6%), or dentists (5%). Occupations in the health care industry not involving patient contact were also at risk including housekeeping, maintenance, and food preparation workers.
NIOSH-Author; Health-care-personnel; Epidemiology; Accident-statistics; Traumatic-injuries; Doctors; Laboratory-workers; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Mortality-data; Medical-personnel
Dr NA Stout, Division of Safety Research, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 944 Chestnut Ridge Road, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health
Page last reviewed: April 12, 2019
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division