Injury rates higher among disabled workers: study

August 6, 2012

Columbus, OH – Workers with disabilities are more likely to be injured on and off the job than workers without disabilities, finds a new study from the Center for Injury Research and Policy of the Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and Ohio State University.

Analyzing data from the 2006-2010 National Health Interview Survey, researchers found the annual rate of occupational injuries was 6.0 per 100 workers with disabilities and 2.3 for workers without disabilities, according to a press release. For non-occupational injuries, the rate was 16.4 for disabled workers compared with 6.4 for non-disabled workers.

Researchers said the results show the need for better accommodation in the workplace, and outreach programs that teach occupational safety and health skills to workers could play “a significant role in preventing injuries.”

Also, falls and transportation were the leading cause of injuries for both groups, prompting researchers to say improving workplace safety would benefit workers regardless of their disability status.

The study was published online July 19 in the American Journal of Public Health.