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Work-Related Asthma

June 18, 2018

Asthma is one of the most common ailments facing Americans, with an estimated 8.2 percent of adults suffering an asthma attack within a year. Roughly half of all people with asthma will have an attack in a one-year timeframe. The U.S. workforce currently has 11 million participants with the condition. Those working in certain industries have a much higher prevalence of asthma than in other types of employment. Proactive measures taken by industries may reduce the number of asthma cases among employees.

Work-Related Asthma by Industry

The group with the highest number of workers diagnosed with asthma are employed in health care and social services. Approximately nine percent of workers in these fields suffer from asthma, for a total of 1.9 million employees. About 45 percent of those 1.9 million reported experiencing an asthma attack over the previous 12 months, and 11 percent required a trip to the emergency room for care. When it comes to percentages of employees with asthma, the transportation and warehousing industries came in first, with nearly 52 percent reporting an asthma attack within a year’s time.

The industry with the highest percentage of workers likely to have an asthma attack is wood products manufacturing at 57 percent. The retail industry reports the highest percentage of workers requiring a visit to the emergency room during an asthma attack over a year’s time, with 12.4 percent. Teachers and others employed in education also had higher than average asthma rates, which brings into question whether students are similarly affected.

Asthma Demographics

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that workers aged 45 to 64 were most likely to experience an asthma attack, with more females experiencing attacks than males. Caucasians were more likely to have asthma than those identifying as other races, as were those with additional education beyond a high school diploma. People living in the South and those with no health insurance or identified as poor were more likely to have an asthma attack.

However, the demographics were quite different for those requiring a trip to the emergency room over the past year for an asthma event. Most workers were young, aged 18 to 24 at 10.5 percent. Females still accounted for most emergency room visits, but those of the African-American race and those with less than a high school education were most likely to need emergency room treatment.

Identifying Asthma Patients

Information regarding asthma patients by industry and demographics may help doctors identify those requiring asthma evaluation. Public health officials also benefit from the data, as they can then identify worksites where asthma is more prevalent and work with companies to control or prevent possible asthma triggers.

Camden County Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at DiTomaso Law Advocate for Injured Workers

If you or a loved one has developed work-related asthma or any other work-related ailment, you need the services of the experienced Camden County Workers’ Compensation lawyers at DiTomaso Law. Call us today at 856-414-0010 for a free case evaluation or contact us online. We are in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and we proudly serve clients from the surrounding areas.

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