Occupational Exposure Monitoring Data Collection, Storage, and Use Among State-Based and Private Workers’ Compensation Insurers
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Occupational Exposure Monitoring Data Collection, Storage, and Use Among State-Based and Private Workers’ Compensation Insurers

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  • English

  • Details:

    • Alternative Title:
      J Occup Environ Hyg
    • Description:
      Despite substantial financial and personnel resources being devoted to occupational exposure monitoring (OEM) by employers, workers' compensation insurers, and other organizations, the United States (U.S.) lacks comprehensive occupational exposure databases to use for research and surveillance activities. OEM data are necessary for determining the levels of workers' exposures; compliance with regulations; developing control measures; establishing worker exposure profiles; and improving preventive and responsive exposure surveillance and policy efforts. Workers' compensation insurers as a group may have particular potential for understanding exposures in various industries, especially among small employers. This is the first study to determine how selected state-based and private workers' compensation insurers collect, store, and use OEM data related specifically to air and noise sampling.  Of 50 insurers contacted to participate in this study, 28 completed an online survey. All of the responding private and the majority of state-based insurers offered industrial hygiene (IH) services to policyholders and employed 1 to 3 certified industrial hygienists on average. Many, but not all, insurers used standardized forms for data collection, but the data were not commonly stored in centralized databases. Data were most often used to provide recommendations for improvement to policyholders. Although not representative of all insurers, the survey was completed by insurers that cover a substantial number of employers and workers. The 20 participating state-based insurers on average provided 48% of the workers' compensation insurance benefits in their respective states or provinces. These results provide insight into potential next steps for improving the access to and usability of existing data as well as ways researchers can help organizations improve data collection strategies. This effort represents an opportunity for collaboration among insurers, researchers, and others that can help insurers and employers while advancing the exposure assessment field in the U.S.
    • Pubmed ID:
      29580189
    • Pubmed Central ID:
      PMC8672207
    • Document Type:
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