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June 17, 1968

Epidemiology in Occupational Disease and Injury

JAMA. 1968;204(12):1062-1064. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140250042011

This discussion is designed to acquaint physicians who provide medical services to industry with basic principles in studying and preventing causes of occupational diseases and accidents. Most physicians are better oriented to treatment than to prevention. Industry expects the physician to assist management in prevention, as well as in treatment, of injury and disease.

The industrial environment often affords the physician such unique tools for study as accident records and reports, preplacement and periodic physical examinations, absenteeism records, and a safety program. Consequently, the physician who is asked to operate an employee health maintenance program has many opportunities to conduct epidemiologic studies of disease and injury among the employees he serves. The physician's interest in the problem and his willingness are the basic requirements for the development of such a program.

Every physician is to some degree an epidemiologist. He is constantly relating the conditions that he sees in his