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Racial and ethnic disparities in work-related injuries and socio-economic resources among nursing assistants employed in US nursing homes.

Tak-S; Alterman-T; Baron-S; Calvert-GM
Am J Epidemiol 2009 Jun; 169(S11):S46
Background: Nursing assistants comprise the vast majority of the direct care workforce in nursing homes. Although previous studies have documented high rates of work-related injury among nursing assistants, little is known about how these rates and other nursing assistant job characteristics vary by race and ethnicity. Methods: The 2004 National Nursing Assistant Survey (NNAS) data were analyzed to estimate the prevalence of work-related injuries by race and ethnicity. Adjusted prevalence ratios (APRs) were estimated using a generalized linear model with a Poisson distribution assumption. Results: A total of 2,880 working nursing assistants in 485 randomly sampled nursing home facilities in 2004 were included in this study. These represent approximately 677,000 US NAs. Injury with the highest prevalence among NAs was 'scratch, open wounds, or cuts' (44%) followed by 'back injuries' (17%) and 'black eyes or other types of bruising' (16%). The prevalence of 'human bites' was 12% representing 77,882 US NAs in nursing homes. The APR for back injury was 0.76 for non-Hispanic black NAs (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.59-0.98) compared to non-Hispanic white NAs. APRs for human bites was 0.47 for non- Hispanic black (95% CI: 0.36-0.62), 0.72 for Hispanic (95% CI: 0.55-0.95), and 0.51 for other racial and ethnic groups (95% CI: 0.34-0.78), compared to non-Hispanic white NAs. Conclusions: minority racial and ethnic groups were less likely to report having experienced injuries and more likely to report intention to leave, compared with non-Hispanic white NAs. This may be due to the difference in the nature of their jobs and the extent of their engagement in assisting patients with their activities of daily living. Future research should focus on identifying preventable risk factors so that injuries can be avoided and equity among racial and ethnic groups attained.
Demographic-characteristics; Epidemiology; Injuries; Nursing; Occupational-hazards; Occupational-health-nursing; Occupational-health-services; Risk-analysis; Safety-practices; Statistical-analysis; Work-analysis; Work-environment; Worker-health; Work-organization; Workplace-studies; Work-practices; Surveillance-programs
SangWoo Tak, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DSHEFS, Cincinnati, OH 45226
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American Journal of Epidemiology. Abstracts of the 42nd Annual Meeting society for Epidemiologic Research Anaheim, California, June 23-26, 2009
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division