Layout and installation of roof rafters on a new commercial residential construciton project by framing contactorsOccupational injuries and illnesses are significant but preventable public health problems, which can result in both healthcare and economic costs for workers and employers.   We recently conducted an analysis using nationally recognized occupational health indicators in order to better understand Arizona’s occupational health successes and opportunities.  The first Arizona Occupational Health Hazard Indicator Report was released this summer.  The report contains workforce statistics, workplace safety and health information, and rates of several work-related injuries and illnesses in Arizona from 2008-2012.

The report shows that the rate of fatal work-related injuries in Arizona gradually decreased and also remained lower than the national rate from 2008-2012. We also saw a decrease in the number of work-related amputations, lower back hospitalizations, and occupational lung disease during this time frame.

Data from this report can help drive interventions and prevention strategies to support a healthy Arizona workforce. For example, ADHS has created a toolkit “Guidance and Resources for Outdoor Workers in the Heat” to support workers and employers in preventing, recognizing, and treating heat illness. Ongoing partnerships between ADHS and local, state and federal agencies, health and safety professionals, employers, and community-based organizations will support Arizona in remaining below national averages for occupational illness and injury and support continued development of tools and resources to benefit Arizona businesses and their workers.