BLS reports a decline in stress injuries from data entry

BLS reports a decline in stress injuries from data entry

By Susan M. Menke

GCN Staff

APRIL 24—Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics does not know exactly why, work injuries from repetitive typing and key entry are on the wane.

The bureau reported a 15.6 percent drop between 1997 and 1998 in the number of keyboarding injuries that led to work absences. The Center for Office Technology of Alexandria, Va., said the finding reduces the need to set ergonomic standards for information technology equipment.

BLS last week reported on its Web site, at www.bls.gov/whatsnew.htm, that the total number of all types of injuries resulting in lost work time beyond the day of the incident had declined every year since 1992. In contrast, the bureau said, injuries that merely restrict activity at work have been on the rise.

Carpal tunnel syndrome and tendinitis suffered by office workers were among the injuries causing the highest median number of days absent in 1998—higher than for fractures or amputations. Strains and sprains continue to be the leading work-related injuries, BLS said.

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