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About NOMS

NIOSH NOMS data can be used to monitor trends or patterns over time in mortality by usual occupation or industry. When repeated at intervals, it is known as occupational mortality surveillance. Occupational mortality surveillance can provide suggestions about the kinds of jobs and worksites that are more hazardous or may be linked to higher mortality risks.
We have posted the results of NOMS data analysis for two different time periods:

  • 1999, 2003-2004, 2007-2010
  • 1985-1998

The results may be browsed using the Charts for Cancer and Chronic Disease buttons. Explanations of NOMS data collection, statistical analysis, the database, and industry and occupation coding may be found in the Methods page. Maps that show the US states that contributed data to NOMS may be viewed below.
Proportionate mortality ratios (PMRs) are population-based estimates of rates that can identify new associations that point to opportunities for research and prevention activities.Identification of trends for known associations can assist in evaluation of prevention activities.Epidemiologists and other public health scientists have used NOMS occupational mortality surveillance data to profile cause-specific mortality by industry and occupation. A list of many of these reports may be found at Publications. A suggested citation is provided for use when citing NOMS data.

Interpretation of PMRs
Users of this website should keep in mind that PMRs are estimates of rates and should be interpreted with caution. PMRs are not meant to be stand-alone estimates of death rates. Because PMRs may be biased statistically, they should be interpreted in context with other, relevant scientific data. These could include occupational exposures, biologic plausibility, and the results of other relevant studies. Epidemiologists and other researchers use the findings reported from NOMS data as an initial step in deciding to investigate them more fully by designing an epidemiologic study. For more information, see the Methods page.

Non Release of NOMS Data
The results of the NOMS data analysis are provided through use of the PMR charts. However, NOMS data may not be released due to data agreements with the US states and the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

State map1

State map2

State map3

NOMS Bibliography
The NOMS bibliography contains references for the National Occupational Mortality Surveillance (NOMS) project, including data collection, analysis and methods.

  1. Robinson CF, Walker JT, Sweeney MH, Shen R, Schumacher PK, Ju J, Nowlin S. 2014. Overview of the National Occupational Mortality Surveillance (NOMS) System: Leukemia and Acute Myocardial Infarction Risk by Industry and Occupation in 30 U.S. States 1985-1999, 2003-2004 and 2007. In press.
  2. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). 2011. The National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA). Accessed May 21, 2012.
  3. Robinson CF, Schumacher PK, Lainez J, Sweeney MH. 2012. Guidelines to Reporting Industry and Occupation on the Death Certificate. DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 2012-149.
  4. Robinson CF, Sullivan PA, Li J, Walker JT. 2011. Occupational Lung Cancer in U.S. Women 1985-1998. Am J Ind Med 54:102-117.
  5. Mannetje A T, Pearce N. 2010. Occupational Mortality Studies: Still Relevant in the 21st Century. Editorial. Occup Environ Med doi:10, 1136/oem.2009.054627.
  6. Kohler BA, et al. 2011. Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer 1975-2007, Featuring Tumors of the Brain and other Nervous System. J Natl Cancer Inst 103;1-23.
  7. Coggon D, et al. 2010. Work-related Mortality in England and Wales, 1979-2000. Occup Environ Med 67; 816-822.
  8. Sorenson G, et al. 2010. Preventing Chronic Disease in the Workplace: A Workshop Report and Recommendations. doi/10.2105/AJPH.2010.300075.
  9. Robinson CF, Schnorr TM, Cassinelli RT, Calvert GM, Steenland NK, Gersic CM, Schubauer-Berigan MK. 2006. Tenth revision U.S. mortality rates for use with the NIOSH life table analysis system. JOEM 48(7):662-667. Accompanying tables may be accessed at
  10. Robinson CF, Petersen M, Palu SM. 1999. Mortality Patterns Among Construction Site Electrical Workers. Conference Proceedings, 2nd International Conference Implementation of Safety and Health on Construction Sites, Honolulu, Hawaii, March 24-27, 1998, Published 1999.
  11. Robinson CF, Petersen M, Sieber WK, Palu S, Halperin WE. 1996. Mortality of Carpenters Union Members Employed in the U.S. Construction or Wood Products Industries, 1987-1990. Amer J Ind Med 30:674-694,.
  12. Robinson CF, Stern F, Venable H, Frazier T, Burnett C, Lalich N, Sestito J, Halperin W, Fingerhut M, and Fine L. 1995. The Assessment of Mortality in the Construction Industry in the United States, 1984-86" Amer J Ind Med 28:49-70.
  13. Sieber WK, et al. Job Exposure Matrix, NIOSH National Occupational Exposure Survey, 1988.
  14. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2004. National Occupational Respiratory Mortality System,
  15. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 2008. Work-Related lung disease surveillance report, 2007; vol. 2: Respiratory conditions by NORA industrial sector, DHHS (NIOSH) Pub. No. 2008-143b. 189 pp.
  16. I/O Coding Quality Control assistance. NIOSH Contact is Pamela Schumacher, Surveillance Branch, Mail Stop R18, Cincinnati, Ohio 45226. (513) 841-4133.
  17. Jemal A, Ward E, Hao Y, Thun M. Trends in the leading causes of death in the United States, 1970-2002. JAMA 2005; 294:(10)1255-1259.
  18. Rosenberg H, Johansson L, Pavillon G, Anderson R 1984. Counting the dead and what they died of. Bull World Health Organ. 2006; 84(3):254.
  19. Johansson L, Westerling R, Rosenberg H. Methodology of studies evaluating death certificate accuracy were flawed. J Clin Epidemiol 2006; 59(2):125-31. NIOSH Tic #16426947.
  20. Checkoway H, Pearce N, Kriebel D. Selecting appropriate study designs to address specific research questions in occupational epidemiology. Occup Environ Med 2007;64:633-638.
  21. Checkoway H. Prioritizing future resources for epidemiologic research on old and newly emerging occupational hazards. Med Lav 2006; 97(2):175-181.
  22. Steenland K, Burnett C, Lalich N, Ward E, Hurrell J. 2003. Dying for work: The magnitude of U.S. mortality from selected causes of death associated with occupation. Am J Ind Med 2003; 43:461-482.
  23. Steenland K, Hu S, Walker J. 2004. All-cause and cause-specific mortality by socioeconomic status among employed persons in 27 U.S. States, 1984-1997. Am J Pub Hlth 94:1037-1042.
  24. Andersen A, Barlow L, Engeland A, Kjaerheim K, Layne E, Pukkala E. Work-Related Cancer in the Nordic Countries. Scand J Work Environ, Health 1999; 25 (Suppl 2): 1-116.
  25. Azaroff L, Levenstein C, Wegman D. Occupational Injury and Illness Surveillance: Conceptual Filters Explain Underreporting. Public Health Matters 2002; 92(9):1421-1429.
  26. Blair A, Dosemeci M, Heineman E. Cancer and other causes of death among male and female farmers from twenty-three states. Am J Ind Med 1993; 23:729-742.
  27. Burnett C, Maurer J, Rosenberg H M, Dosemeci M. Mortality by Occupation, Industry and Cause of Death, 24 Reporting States, 1984-1988. DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 97-114, 1997.
  28. Cassini, Vergil. Occupational Electrocutions. American Society of Safety Engineers. January, 1993.
  29. Lalich N, Burnett CA, Robinson CF, Sestito JP, Schuster L. A Guide For The Management, Analysis, and Interpretation of Occupational Mortality Data, GPO, 1989.
  30. Lalich N, Schuster L. An application of the sentinel health event (occupational) concept. Am J Public Health 1987; 77:1310-1314.
  31. Kircher T, Nelson J, Burdo H. The autopsy as a measure of accuracy of the death certificate. N Engl J Med 1985; 313:1263-1269.
  32. Dubrow R, Sestito J, Lalich N, Burnett C, Salg J. Death certificate-based occupational mortality surveillance in the United States. Am J Ind Med 1987; 11:329-342.
  33. Guralnick L. Mortality by occupation and industry among men 20-64 years of age: United States, 1950. Vital Statistics-Special Reports, Vol. 53, No. 2. Washington, DC: 1962. Govt Printing Office.
  34. Miettinen O, Wang J: An alternative to the Proportionate Mortality Ratio. Am J Epid 1981; 114(1):144-148.
  35. Melius JM, Sestito JP, Seligman PJ. Occupational disease surveillance with existing data sources. Am J Pub Hlth 1989; 79 supp. Dec.
  36. Miettinen O, Wang J. 1983. An alternative to the proportionate mortality ratio. Am J Epid. 114(1):144-148.
  37. DeCoufle P, Thomas T, Pickle L. Comparision of the proportionate mortality ratio and standardized mortality ration risk measures. Am J Epidemiol 1980; 111(3):263-269.
  38. Milham S. 1997. Occupational mortality in Washington State, 1950-1979. NIOSH Pub. No. 83-116. National Technical Information Service, Springfield. VA. No. PB-84-199-769/E09.
  39. National Center for Health Statistics: Guidelines for reporting occupation and industry on death certificates. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 1988.
  40. National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS): Funeral Directors’ Handbook on Death Registration and Fetal Death Reporting. DHEW Pub. NO. (PHS) 78-1109. Washington, DC: GPO, 1978.
  41. Registrar General for England and Wales: Occupational Mortality, Decennial Supplement for Great Britain, 1979-80, 1982-83, London: Her Majesty’s Stationery Office, 1995.
  42. Rosenberg HM, Burnett C, Maurer J, Spirtas R. 1993. Mortality by occupation, industry, and cause of death: 12 reporting states, 1984. Monthly Vital Stat Report 42(S4).
  43. Rothman KJ. Modern Epidemiology. Boston: Little, Brown and Company 1986.
  44. Schade WJ, Swanson GM. 1988. Comparison of death certificate occupation and industry data with lifetime occupational histories obtained by interview: variations in the accuracy of death certificate entries. Am J Ind Med. 14(2):121-136.
  45. Semiatyeki 1995.
  46. Steenland K, Beaumont J. The accuracy of occupation and industry data on death certificates. J Occup Med 1984; 26:288-296.
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