Surveillance Program

What are our priorities?

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Surveillance Program works with partners in industry, labor, trade associations, professional organizations, government agencies, and academia. The program:

  • Expands awareness, knowledge, and use of occupational safety and health (OSH) surveillance data
  • Builds capacity for state-based OSH surveillance
  • Integrates OSH variables into general health surveillance systems and Occupational Data for Health (ODH) into health Information Technology (IT) systems
  • Supports industry and health and safety surveillance needs, and addresses cross-cutting surveillance issues
What do we do?
  • Examine surveillance trends by visualizing data from state and federal partners. Examples include Worker Health Charts (WHC), Absenteeism in the Workplace dashboards, and Mine and Mine Worker Charts.
  • Increase states’ capacity to conduct case-based surveillance of priority occupational injuries and illnesses.
  • Identify opportunities to use novel sources of surveillance data, such as audiometric data and workers’ compensation data.
  • Increase awareness and promote the incorporation of ODH into health IT systems.
What have we accomplished?
  • Released interactive NIOSH Mine and Mine Worker Charts that provide facts about the industry and miner injury estimates.
  • Completed Mining Industry and Workforce Survey data collection for the coal industry.
  • Completed the redesign of the Commercial Fishing Incident Database to collect information on both nonfatal and fatal injuries and vessel disasters.
  • Evaluated industry and occupation coding methods for the National Occupational Mortality Surveillance (NOMS) system in collaboration with the National Center for Health Statistics.
  • Enhanced NIOCCS by implementing machine learning, which increases auto-coding speed (~100x faster) and improves consistency of assigned Census industry and occupation codes.
  • Finalized an information model, vocabulary, multiple interoperability templates, and a software prototype to demonstrate collection of ODH in Health IT systems, such as EHRs.
  • Published a paper that found annual increases of 24% in drug overdose deaths at work for the years 2011-2016. Highlighted the most affected industries in an infographic.
What’s next?
  • Incorporate the Fatalities in Oil and Gas Extraction (FOG) surveillance data into the NIOSH WHC data visualization tool.
  • Use NIOCCS to code industry and occupation (I/O) for all death certificates received in 2020 by the 47 states and one city participating in NOMS (~3 million records).
  • Engage clinical organizations to pilot the collection and use of ODH in EHRs.

Mention of any company or product does not constitute endorsement by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

At-A-Glance

The Surveillance Program improves the understanding of worker safety and health by identifying and tracking workplace injuries, illnesses, hazards, deaths, and exposures in the United States. This snapshot shows recent accomplishments and upcoming activities.

Cumulative number of records submitted* to NIOCCS
line chart of Cumulative number of records submitted* to NIOCCS

*Includes both internal and external user submissions, crosswalks, and industry and occupation coding.
Source: NIOSH Program Records

Absenteeism in the Workplace
banner for view the latest trends
NIOSH Mine and Mine Worker Charts
A picture containing drawing of a line chart and globe with a grid background

To learn more, visit
www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/surveillance
October 2020

Page last reviewed: June 5, 2020