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Safe Work in the 21st Century: Education and Training Needs for the Next Decade’s Occupational Safety and Health Personnel
FIGURE 1-1 Deaths per 100,000 workers due to injury, 1913 to 1998. (Data for death rates from injury for the years between 1913 and 1933 were not available. Because of adoption of the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries to include deaths of any worker regardless of age (previous years surveyed only persons over the age of 16 who were gainfully employed), numbers of deaths and death rates from 1992 to the present are not comparable to those for earlier years). SOURCES: Corn (1992), National Safety Council (1999).
(approximately 9 percent of the institute’s occupational safety and health [OSH] budget) that comprises a network of 15 regional Education and Research Centers (ERCs) located at leading universities in 14 states and approximately 40 individual training project grants in 25 states and Puerto Rico. Every year, approximately 500 students graduate from NIOSH-supported programs with backgrounds in occupational medicine, occupational health nursing, industrial hygiene, and safety. Many current leaders and OSH advocates have received training from NIOSH-funded programs. According to a 1996 report by the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Office of Inspector General, 1996), about 90 percent of ERC graduates pursue careers in OSH in private industry, labor, government agencies, medicine, and academia.
The work environment has changed since the OSHAct was passed more than 30 years ago. Work injuries and illnesses that were unrecognized at that time now contribute greatly to the present OSH burden. New information about ergonomics and the association between work organization and job stress mean that there is a newly recognized need for personnel qualified in carrying out interventions that will prevent adverse health outcomes related to these factors. Worker demographics are changing, with more women, minorities, and people with disabilities being in the workforce. Older workers (those over 50 years of age) and