National and subnational mortality and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) attributable to 17 occupational risk factors in Iran, 1990–2015

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We estimated age-sex specific and cause-specific mortality, years of life lost due to premature mortality (YLLs), years lived with disability (YLDs) and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) attributable to 17 individual occupational risks in Iran at the national and subnational levels in 1990–2015 based on the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015 (GBD 2015). The burden of disease attributable to occupational risk factors was calculated using the comparative risk assessment methodology based on 10 outcomes and 21 risk-outcome pairs. The temporal changes in the attributable burden of disease were decomposed into the contribution of population growth, population ageing, risk-deleted DALY rate, and risk exposure. National DALYs attributable to occupational risks at the national level in 1990, 2005, and 2015 were 138,210 (95% uncertainty interval 64,429–223,028), 193,243 (91,645–310,281), and 228,310 (106,782–371,709), respectively indicating a total increase of 65% (65–67) during the study period. Between 1990 and 2015, the share of the attributable DALYs for women rose by 55% (51–58) from 13% (12–14) to 20% (19–21). The proportion of YLLs in national DALYs attributable to occupational risks during the study period slightly decreased from 24% in 1990 to 23% in 2015. The five occupational risks with the highest contributions in the national attributable DALYs in 2015 were ergonomic factors (107,490), noise (52,122), exposure to particulate matter, gases, and fumes (26,847), asthmagens (19,347), and exposure to asbestos (7842). From 1990 to 2015, the increase in total DALYs attributable to occupational carcinogens (112%) was higher than that for other occupational risks. During the study period, changes in risk deleted DALY rate and risk exposure led to decreases in total DALYs attributable to occupational risks by 14% and 30%, respectively. Based on the Gini coefficient, spatial inequality in DALY rate attributable to occupational risks at the provincial level decreased during 1990–2015. A comprehensive plan for management of exposure to occupational risks, especially occupational carcinogens can cause an important effect for control of the increasing trend of occupational health losses.

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