263088 Developing a worker exposure website based on OSHA IMIS data

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Chris Saganich, MS, CPH , Public Health, CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY
Since 1979, OSHA inspectors have submitted air, wipe, and bulk samples to the OSHA Salt Lake City Technical Center for analysis. The results of these analyses have been maintained in a database documenting more than 20 attributes of the exposure. In 2008 the Department of Labor complied with a court ordered FOIA request to release all information. Currently this database is being transformed into web-based resource intended for workers, community organizations, activists, and researchers. The main objective of this project is to clearly communicate exposure results to industry and OSHA workers, assess workplace exposures within and across industries, and evaluate workplace inspection disparities and trends. All locations where samples have been recorded are geocoded from address and zip code fields into GPS coordinates. Workers are able to see a single-symbol representation of all OSHA inspections on a small scale U.S. map and then choose to scale up at any location to find specific work places on a neighborhood level. Once a workplace is identified average yearly TWA, median short-term exposures, and cumulative exposure are available based on a range of years selected. Qualitative measures are reported by calculated percent of permissible or recommended exposure limits and ranking the result as low, medium, high, and very high exposure.

The expected outcomes include supplying industry workers and OSHA inspectors with exposure histories that can be used to profile health risk, assess exposure disparities and trends within and between industries, and evaluate inspection trends.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Communication and informatics
Occupational health and safety

Learning Objectives:
Describe process of building a data intensive website targeting worker chemical exposures across space and time. Identify metrics and web presentation methods best suited for target audience. Discuss and demonstrate research potential.

Keywords: Occupational Exposure, Advocacy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Masters in Environmental and Occupational Health, Certified in Public Health, Senior Health Physicist specializing in occupational exposures.
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.