Occupational Health and Safety Surveillance Program

Men looking at notebookThe Iowa Occupational Health and Safety Surveillance Program is part of the Iowa Department of Public Health Acute Disease Prevention, Emergency Response, and Environmental Health Division. The program focuses on Iowa data surveillance related to worker health and safety. The IDPH OHSSP is funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health and includes the Adult Blood Lead Epidemiology and Surveillance program (ABLES).

Iowa Department of Public Health OHSSP

  • Compiles and analyzes Iowa data for national Occupational Health Indicators
  • Compiles and analyzes Iowa data for Healthy Iowans: Iowans Health Improvement Plan 2017-2021.
  • Partners with other programs and agencies to address work-related hazards and health issues impacting Iowa workers based on surveillance data.
    • Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) Pesticide Bureau on reports of pesticide exposures to people in Iowa.
    • Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Public Safety (DPS) regarding roadway safety.
    • Zero Fatality Project partner
  • Responds to work-related events requiring public health assistance, including conditions requiring mandatory reporting, Iowa Administrative Code 641 Chapter 1.
  • NOTE:  Funding for the Pesticide Sentinel Event Notification System for Occupational Risk (SENSOR) program, and the Fatalities Assessment and Control Evaluation (FACE) ended July 2015, but prior information is still available.

Did You Know?

  • Final data for 2015 demonstrated a substantial decrease in traumatic work-related fatal injuries in Iowa, with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reporting 60 deaths, or a rate of 3.9 worker deaths per 100,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers. In 2014, there were 91 Iowa deaths reported for a rate of 5.8/100,000 FTE.
  • Iowa continues to have a higher rate of work-related fatal injuries than the US, which had a rate of 3.4/100,000 FTE in 2015.
  • The three industries in Iowa with the highest rates of traumatic work-related fatal injuries in 2015 are Agriculture* (14.7), Construction (12.5), and Transportation and Utilities (7.7).
  • IDPH OHSSP data from 2009-2013 shows that an average of 16% of the Iowa workforce by industry sustained an average of 63% of the work fatalities:
    • Agriculture*: 5% of the workforce, 32% of the work fatalities.
    • Construction: 6% of the workforce, 17% of the work fatalities.
    • Transportation and warehousing: 5% of the workforce, 14% of the work fatalities.

*Includes agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting but for Iowa, the majority of fatal occupational injuries are related to agriculture.


Other Information

Agriculture and Rural Health & Safety

The Iowa Department of Public Health Occupational Health & Safety Surveillance Program will host the 2018 Farm Progress Show Health and Safety Tent, August 28-30.

The event is held in Iowa west of Boone and east of Ames at the intersection of Highway 30 and Highway 17 every other year. If you are interested in partnering as an exhibitor in the 2018 Health & Safety Tent area, contact Kathy at 800-972-2026.