Consensus Report

A Smarter National Surveillance System for Occupational Safety and Health in the 21st Century (2018)


Each report is produced by a committee of experts selected by the Academy to address a particular statement of task and is subject to a rigorous, independent peer review; while the reports represent views of the committee, they also are endorsed by the Academy. Learn more on our expert consensus reports.

Worker safety and health is of paramount importance to thriving workplaces and the well-being of the 156 million adults in the U.S. workforce. Occupational safety and health (OSH) surveillance systems provide the data and analyses needed to understand the relationships between work and injuries and illnesses with the goal of improving worker safety and health. In the United States, OSH surveillance is a collaborative effort of federal, state, and local agencies and stakeholders across employers, employee organizations, professional associations, and other organizations.

This new report concludes that the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) should lead a collaborative effort with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the states to establish and strengthen regional occupational safety and health surveillance programs. The report envisions a smarter surveillance system that would minimize the undercounting of occupational injuries and illnesses by making strategic use of different datasets and surveys, expand tracking of health outcomes to include chronic diseases and their causes, and maximize appropriate use of technologies for surveillance and communications.

Watch the Report Release Webinar Recording Below:

A Smarter National Surveillance System for Occupational Safety and Health in the 21st Century: Report Release Webinar from The National Academies on Vimeo.