New Center Formed to Analyze Workers Comp Injury Trends
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) this year launched its Center for Workers’ Compensation Studies (CWCS) in order to organize workers’ compensation data that is already being analyzed by NIOSH researchers in existing programs, such as the Economics Program, Surveillance Program, and the Center for Motor Vehicle Safety.
The goal of CWCS is to use workers’ compensation data to prevent and reduce the severity of workplace injuries and illnesses. The Center will work with public and private partners to maximize the use of its own workers’ compensation data. The CWCS is conducting analyses across a wide range of industry sectors, including: construction, healthcare and social assistance, manufacturing, public safety, services, mining, transportation, warehousing, and wholesale and retail trade.
The NIOSH stated that “this is important because coordinated workers compensation research has been conducted mostly at large commercial insurers, state-based insurers, or industry organizations [such as the NCCI], which have not always distributed their data or research findings widely. Although these systems represent one of the largest, potentially richest information sources for safety and health, research using such data for prevention purposes has been limited.”
About the NIOSH’s Programs & Research
NIOSH’s Surveillance Program identifies trends and tracks work-related injuries and illnesses. The aim of their surveillance activities include: understanding the use and limits of workers’ compensation data systems; identifying priorities for research and intervention; and integrating workers’ compensation data with other health-related data.
Through NIOSH’s research, the organization is working to understand the full economic impact of work-related injuries and illnesses and develop prevention strategies. The goal of the research activities is to understand injury/ illness risk, disability, and cost; identify ways to prevent injury/illness and reduce disability and costs; and develop best practices for prevention and disability management.
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