Occupational ergonomics: theory and applications. Bhattacharya A, McGlothlin JD, eds. New York: Marcel Dekker, 1996 Apr; :477-488
Surveillance means different things to different people. A formal definition of surveillance for cumulative trauma disorders (CTDs) may be stated as "the ongoing and systematic collection, analysis and interpretation of exposure and health data necessary for the planning, implementation, and evaluation of programs for prevention and control of CTDs" (From Ref. I, with slight modification). Surveillance is a noun derived from the verb "survey," which means "to take a general or comprehensive view of a situation" and "to view in detail in order to ascertain a condition, value, etc." Further, the word surveillance implies the attitude of preparedness to make appropriate responses to the surveyed situation. Therefore, in a very broad sense, surveillance is a basic survival function of any living organism. Even a small creature performs surveillance of its surroundings and responds by flight from an attacker or a dash toward food. In our current context, business organizations, both small companies and large corporations, must maintain surveillance of production, customer's needs, market trends, and employee health status to survive and maintain a healthy existence.