Prioritizing industries for occupational injury prevention and research in the Services Sector in Washington State, 2002-2010

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: The Services Sector, as defined by the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA), is comprised of a diverse industry mix and its workers face a variety of occupational exposures and hazards. The objective of this study was to identify high-risk industry groups within the Services Sector for prevention targeting.<br /><br />METHODS: Compensable Washington State workers' compensation claims from the Services Sector from 2002 through 2010 were analyzed. A "prevention index" (PI), the average of the rank orders of claim count and claim incidence rate, was used to rank 87 Services Sector industry groups by seven injury types: Work- Related Musculoskeletal Disorders (WMSDs), Fall to Lower Level, Fall on Same Level, Struck By/Against, Caught In/Under/Between, Motor Vehicle, and Overexertion. In the PI rankings, industry groups with high injury burdens appear higher ranked than industry groups with low counts or low rates of injury, indicating a need for prioritizing injury prevention efforts in these groups.<br /><br />RESULTS: In the Services Sector, these 7 injury types account for 84% of compensable claims in WA. The industry groups highest ranked by PI across the injury types included: Services to Buildings and Dwellings; Executive, Legislative, and Other General Government Support; and Waste Collection. WMSDs had the highest compensable claims rates.<br /><br />CONCLUSIONS: Services is a large sector of the economy, and the substantial number, rate, and cost of occupational injuries within this sector should be addressed. Several Services Sector industry groups are at high risk for a variety of occupational injuries. Using a PI to rank industry groups based on their injury risk provides information with which to guide prevention efforts.

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Anderson, N. J., Bonauto, D. K., & Adams, D. (2014, November 9). Prioritizing industries for occupational injury prevention and research in the Services Sector in Washington State, 2002-2010. Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology. BioMed Central Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12995-014-0037-2

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