The aim of this study is to examine health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among U.S. injured workers using a longitudinal study of a nationally representative sample.
Employed adults with and without occupational injuries from the 2000 to 2011 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) were included. Outcomes were the physical and mental components of the SF-12. A within-person change using paired tests and a between-person change using multivariable regression were performed.
We estimate over 1.6 million injured workers per year. Sprains were the most common injury. Relative to noninjured workers, injured workers reported 3.0 and 1.0 points lower physical and mental component scores, respectively.
These results confirm that occupational injuries cause significant deficits in the physical component of HRQOL. This highlights the importance of preventing occupational injuries to reduce associated disabilities in the U.S.