Mortality of older construction and craft workers employed at department of energy (DOE) nuclear sites: Follow-up through 2011


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Abstract

BackgroundThe Building Trades National Medical Screening Program (BTMed) was established in 1996 to provide occupational medicine screening examinations for construction workers who have worked at US Department of Energy nuclear sites. Workers participating in BTMed between 1998 and 2011 were followed to determine their vital status and mortality experience through December 31, 2011.MethodsThe cohort includes 18,803 BTMed participants and 2,801 deaths. Cause-specific Standardized Mortality Ratios (SMRs) were calculated based on US death rates.ResultsMortality was elevated for all causes, all cancers, cancers of the trachea, bronchus, and lung and lymphatic and hematopoietic system, mesothelioma, COPD, and asbestosis.ConclusionsConstruction workers employed at DOE sites have a significantly increased risk for occupational illnesses. Risks are associated with employment during all time periods covered including after 1980. The cancer risks closely match the cancers identified for DOE compensation from radiation exposures. Continued medical surveillance is important. Am. J. Ind. Med. 58:152–167, 2015. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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