Background: The current study characterizes patterns of occupational injury fatalities in New Mexico for the 5-year period 1998-2002.
Methods: The study applied methods developed by the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists/National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (CSTE/NIOSH) Occupational Health Indicator Work Group and compared the relative strength and weakness of two different datasets (CFOI and NMVRHS) for occupational injury fatality surveillance.
Results: Annual occupational injury mortality rates ranged from 4.4 to 7.6 per 100,000 employed persons aged 16 and over compared to annual US rates of 4.0-4.6 per 100,000. Risk factors for higher mortality rates included age over 65 years, self-employment, non-US citizenship, being African-American or Hispanic, and occurrence in rural counties. The top industry for fatality rate was mining followed by transportation, public utilities, agriculture, and construction.
Conclusions: Applying CSTE/NIOSH Occupational Health Indicator protocol and using both CFOI and NMVRHS data improved the characterization of occupational injury mortality and the setting of priorities for prevention intervention.