Former Director Christ Ended the Collaboration

During the Brewer Administration the ADHS and academia collaborated on several projects to better inform worker safety regulatory work including one that examined the utility of using the hospital discharge database to improve the effectiveness of ADOSH regulation of worker safety.

One such project resulted in the journal article below. Soon after former Director Christ took over leadership at ADHS all such collaboration stopped.

Arizona Hospital Discharge and Emergency Department Database: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Abstract: The goal of the project was to identify trends in emergency department visits and inpatient admissions for occupational injury and disease frequency and describe the financial impact from specific clinical groups known to have occupational risk factors.

Workers’ compensation cases among 19 million records in the Arizona statewide hospital discharge database (HDD) were assessed for seven clinical groups from 2008 to 2014, including back, cardiac, carpal tunnel syndrome, heat-related, psychiatric, pulmonary, and trauma.

Cases with cardiac, psychiatric, and pulmonary diagnoses were both frequent and expensive. Although incidence was generally stable, charges per case rose significantly over the time period.

Inpatient and emergency department records supply valuable data that complement other surveillance approaches for both occupational illnesses and injuries. Tracking charge as well as incidence data is useful.