Musculoskeletal disorders have been defined to include overexertion and repetitive motion cases, defined by Event or Exposure codes 22 (Overexertion applies to cases, usually non-impact, in which the injury or illness resulted from excessive physical effort directed at an outside source of injury or illness. The physical effort may involve lifting, pulling, pushing, turning, wielding, holding, carrying, or throwing the source of injury/illness) and 23 (Repetitive motion applies when an injury or illness resulted from bodily motion which imposed stress or strain upon some part of the body due to a task's repetitive nature) as defined by BLS.
The SOII is a cooperative Federal–State program in which employer reports of occupational injuries and illnesses based on Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recordkeeping rules are collected from a nationally representative sample of private industry establishments. For the first time in 2008, the SOII provided national public sector estimates covering nearly 19 million state and local government workers. However, this objective tracks only workers in the private sector because BLS does not publish aggregate rate data for private industry and state and local governments that rely on “days away from work” data. SOII excludes the self-employed, farms with fewer than 11 employees, private household workers, and employees in Federal government agencies.
The incidence rates represent the number of illnesses per 10,000 full-time workers and were calculated as: (N/EH) x 20,000,000, where N= number of illnesses, EH=total hours worked by all employees during the calendar year, and 20,000,000=base for 10,000 equivalent full-time workers (working 40 hours per week, 50 weeks per year).
Work-related musculoskeletal disorders continue to be a significant public health problem. Over 30 percent of all nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses with days away from work continue to be attributable to overexertion and repetitive motion injuries and illnesses.