Friday, September 21, 2012

Report: Occupational disease down in Connecticut, but state rates still higher than average

A recent University of Connecticut report shows that incidents of occupational disease in Connecticut are down, but remain higher than the rest of the country.

The report focuses on incidents of occupational disease from 2010, not occupational accidents, which are, as the rport says, a completely different ball of wax.

"Occupational diseases are typically harder to detect than injuries, since they often occur over longer periods of time, and can have multiple (including non-occupational) risks," the report says.

Statewide, the rate of occupational disease (23.1 cases per 10,000 workers) was 9.5 percent higher than the average national rate.

In Connecticut, education and health workers reported the highest rates of occupational disease, which overall saw a 10 percent decrease from 2009. Manufacturing sectors saw an even more significant decrease, the rate of occupational disease dropping 23 percent. It's still the second highest rate among the labor sectors.

Interestingly, local government was listed as having the third-highest rate of occupational disease, though the rate had dropped 28 percent from 2009.

"State government had the highest rate of respiratory conditions among all sectors, second-highest skin conditions rate, and fourth highest overall rate, the report says.

The most common workplace disease? Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, which increased from 2.2 cases per 10,000 workers in 2009 to 2.5 in 2010.

The full report, developed for the Connecticut Workers’ Compensation Commission under the Occupational Illnesses and Injury, is below.


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