This presentation describes occupations and industries with elevated respiratory tuberculosis mortality. For this purpose, we used National Center for Health Statistics multiple-cause-of-death data for the period 1990-1999, restricted to certain states for which decedents' usual industry and occupational information was available, and limited to U.S. residents aged 15 years and older. Within this dataset, a total of 7,686 deaths for this period were attributed to respiratory tuberculosis. Proportionate mortality ratios (PMRs), adjusted for age, sex, and race, were obtained by standard occupation and industry classifications. Industries with significantly elevated tuberculosis mortality included 'offices and clinics of health practitioners' (PMR=3.0. 95% CI 1.6-5.2), 'nonmetallic mining and quarrying, except fuel' (PMR-1.9, 95% C1 1.1-3.1), 'agricultural production, crops' (PMR=1.5, 95% C1 1.4-1.6), 'coal mining' (PMR=1.4, 95% C1 1.1-1.8), 'hospitals' (PMR=1.2, 95% C1 1.0-1.4), and 'construction' (PMR=1.1, 95% C1 1.0-1.2). Occupations with significantly elevated tuberculosis mortality included 'crushing and grinding machine operators' (PMR=3.5, 95% C1 1.8-6.3), 'farm workers' (PMR=1.7, 95% C1 1.4-2.1), 'mining machine operators' (PMR=1.7, 95% C1 1.4-2.1), and 'construction laborers' (PMR=1.4 95% C1=1.2-1.6). Industries and occupations involving mining and construction with significantly elevated tuberculosis mortality were also associated with high silicosis mortality. These findings may be useful in guiding occupationally targeted tuberculosis prevention programs.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, CDC, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505