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Using Death Certificates to Target Occupation Groups for Health Promotion and Disease Screening in North Carolina by

By Kathryn B. Surles, Ziya Gizlice Ph. D, Paul A. Buescher and Ph. D


Objectives: The purpose of this study is to examine occupational mortality differences among working-age North Carolinians in order to target occupation groups for health promotion and disease screening activities related to four site-specific cancers: colon/rectum, prostate, female breast, and cervix. Clinical screening tests are available for each of those types of cancer. Methods: This study uses proportionate mortality ratios (PMRs) to examine associations between occupation and the selected causes of death. The analysis includes 80 occupation categories and three consecutive 5-year time periods. PMRs are generated for male and female decedents in two age groups: 35-49 and 50-64. Results: Significantly high PMRs and high numbers of deaths are observed for colon/rectum cancer among males in executive/administrative/managerial occupations and breast cancer among females working as executives/administrators/managers, secretaries/stenographers/typists, and teachers except postsecondary. Results from other occupational studies are reviewed, and survey results concerning health promotion activities in the state’s private sector worksites are summarized. Conclusion: There is a large potential for using the worksite to bring health promotion information and disease screening to North Carolina residents. Results of the present PMR analysis for four cancer sites should b

Year: 1999
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