249713 Injury Disparities Among Hispanic Construction Workers

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Taiye Oladipo, BSA , Robert Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work, Department of Epidemiology, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Janvier Gasana, MD PhD , Environmental & Occupational Health, FIU Stempel College of Public Health and Social Work, Miami, FL
Background and Objective: Unintentional injuries remain among the top ten leading causes of death in the United States. In terms of occupational injury, the construction industry is one of the top industries for reported fatal and non-fatal injury. In fact in 2007, construction accounted for 1,178 fatal work injuries, the highest of any industry sector. The construction industry is largely comprised of Hispanic construction workers and they seem to be at a higher risk of getting injured on the job than their non-Hispanic counterparts. The objective of this study is to identify the factors that contribute to racial disparities in injury in the construction industry especially among Hispanics.

Methods: A systematic search of the literature was performed on PubMed and Highwire from 2000-2011. Search terms included “Hispanic or Latino”, “injury or morbidity”, and “construction workers”. Factors that contributed to disparities were then gathered and compared across studies.

Results: Hispanic construction workers were especially at risk of getting injured on the job because of factors such as low socioeconomic status, lack of proper training, communication barriers, health illiteracy, lack of insurance, unfamiliarity with workers compensation, and union status compared to non-Hispanics. Literature also shows that much of their injuries were underreported.

Conclusion: Racial disparities in injury definitely exist in the construction industry and tailored interventions for Hispanic construction workers that take into account these factors need to be developed. More training and better communication modes on risk and safety should be presented before they become engaged in this high risk industry.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Diversity and culture
Occupational health and safety

Learning Objectives:
1)Identify the factors that contribute to racial disparities in injury in the construction industry among Hispanic workers. 2)Assess these factors in order to formulate appropriate intervention strategies

Keywords: Injury Risk, Hispanic

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a Masters in Public Health Student interested in Injury Epidemiology and prevention and have been engaged in research that looks at injury in different sectors such as occupational or motor vehicle injury
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.