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Occupational safety and health in New York.

Gelberg K
Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, U60-OH-008474, 2010 Oct; :1-32
The systematic collection, analysis, interpretation, dissemination and use of health data is essential to understand the health status of a population, to assess progress, and to plan effective prevention programs. The New York State (NYS) Department of Health's (DOH) Bureau of Occupational Health (BOH) worked to identify new data systems to identify occupational health risks; incorporated occupational health data into other tracking systems; identified high-risk industries, occupations and populations at high-risk in New York; educated workers, businesses and health care professionals about occupational risks; and evaluated systems to determine if public health programs were making an impact on occupational health issues. Databases were analyzed during the grant period to determine the magnitude and distribution of occupational injuries and illnesses and to identify high-risk populations in both New York State and New York City. Deidentified emergency department data was obtained during this project time period and analyzed using expected payer of Worker's Compensation as the proxy for work-relatedness along with a new variable identifying potential work-related cases. BOH has worked extensively to identify and address occupational health issues among high-risk, vulnerable populations. A trend analysis review of traumatic occupational fatalities showed an increasing number of deaths among immigrant and Hispanic workers in NYS, similar to that seen nationally. This is driven by an increase in the total number of immigrant and Hispanic workers in NYS, demonstrating a need to target educational efforts specific to these populations. It is recognized that engaging stakeholders and increasing partnerships is important in terms of program design and evaluation, and as a step towards integrating our occupational health work into mainstream public health practice. BOH staff work with numerous NYSDOH programs to encourage sharing of ideas and information. Primary among these activities is the Scientific Working Group for Occupational Health. Other partnerships include participating in the cross-organizational response to asthma with BOH staff participating on the guidance, surveillance; environmental and occupational, and health care delivery teams; the NYS Young Workers Safety and Health Project; the Occupational Health Clinic Network Oversight Committee; the Governor's Lead Advisory Council; the NY/NJ Hazardous Waste Worker Training Center advisory board; the NYC Mayor's World Trade Center Medical Working Group; and the September 11 Worker Protection Task Force. Staff also provide lectures on occupational health issues to students at the State University of New York Albany School of Public Health. BOH also engages in a number of activities to share information with the general NYS community. Since 2004, a proclamation has been read on the NYS Legislative floor declaring the second Tuesday in March, Occupational Health Awareness and Outreach Day. The day promotes education and prevention efforts highlighting health and safety on the job, as well as working condition concerns of many workers across the state. It is celebrated annually with a joint press release from the NYSDOH and the NYS Department of Labor, a press conference held by the Occupational Health Clinic Network, and with tables displaying occupational health information in the state government complex in Albany. BOH conducts surveillance of pesticide poisonings in NYS using the NYS Pesticide Poisoning Registry (PPR). This program receives reports from physicians, health facilities and clinical laboratories and offers timely follow-up and intervention in various exposure situations. The PPR has been an integral part of surveillance activities developed to identify and characterize possible health effects related to West Nile Virus mosquito control programs in NYS. In order to improve reporting, physician outreach has been targeted to specific populations that are most likely to encounter pesticide poisonings. Educational outreach activities included distributing PPR materials to pesticide applicators; PPR staff providing information on symptoms associated with pesticides exposure and what applicators can do once an exposure is known; a PowerPoint presentation was developed to supplement material sent to ER staff; and a CD-ROM was developed for physicians and physician assistants who may treat patients with suspected or confirmed pesticide poisoning containing a PDF version of the EPA "Recognition and Management of Pesticide Poisoning" and the ER Power Point presentation developed in 2007. The NY Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (NY FACE) program has focused its intervention efforts on the following high risk populations: young workers under 25 years of age, older workers over 60 years of age, foreign-born workers, and workers who are employed in construction or agricultural industries. NY FACE also assists NIOSH FACE in investigating its targeted causes of death. Besides the routine intervention activities, NY FACE also conducts Priority Industry Initiatives (PII). PII are projects designed to target a specific sub-population within a high risk population for intervention. These projects, with clearly defined action plans, time lines and outcomes, are carried out in close collaboration with partners representing the target population. NY FACE conducted two PII: Tree Work Injury Prevention Project and Ski Areas of New York (SANY) Project. Through these initiatives, NY FACE has generated maximum impact on the target populations and achieve clear defined measurable injury prevention outcomes. The World Trade Center (WTC) Responders Fatality Investigation program identified 836 deaths that occurred after the WTC responder among responders, volunteers and workers at the WTC and the landfill. Data analyses are currently being conducted to examine whether there is an increased risk for any specific causes of death among the responder/worker population.
Exposure-levels; Analytical-processes; Demographic-characteristics; Risk-factors; Public-health; Health-programs; Injuries; Workers; Work-environment; Worker-health; Traumatic-injuries; Sociological-factors; Education; Training; Respiratory-irritants; Respiration; Pulmonary-function; Pulmonary-system; Environmental-hazards; Environmental-factors; Environmental-exposure; Health-care; Health-care-personnel; Medical-personnel; Pesticides; Age-groups; Surveillance-programs
Kitty H. Gelberg, Ph.D., MPH, New York State Department of Health/Health Research Inc. Center for Environmental Health, Bureau of Occupational Health, 547 River Street, Troy, NY 12180
Publication Date
Document Type
Final Cooperative Agreement Report
Email Address
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
NIOSH Division
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Performing Organization
New York State Department of Health/Health Research Incorporated
Page last reviewed: March 25, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division