The relationship between free press and under-reporting of non-fatal occupational injuries with data from representative national indicators, 2015: Focusing on the lethality rate of occupational injuries among 39 countries

Sung Shil Lim, Jin Ha Yoon, Jeongbae Rhie, Suk Won Bae, Jihyun Kim, Jong Uk Won

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The epidemiology of occupational injuries is reported worldwide, but suspicions of under-reporting prevail, probably associated with free press. We examined the association between freedom of the press and lethality rate of occupational injuries based on the most comprehensive International Labour Organization database on labour statistics (ILOSTAT) among 39 countries. The occupational injury indices, national indicators, and information on freedom of the press in 2015 were sourced from ILOSTAT, World Bank open data, World Health Organization and Freedom House. The lethality rate was the number of fatal occupational injuries per 10,000 total occupational injuries. The relationship among fatal and total occupation injury rates, lethality rate, and national statistics were analysed using Spearman’s rank correlation coefficients. Multivariable linear regression models with bootstrap estimation to manage non-normality determined freedom of the press associated with lethality rate. Freedom of the press was significantly correlated with fatal and total occupational injury rate and lethality rate of occupational injuries. Adjusting for national indicators, only freedom of the press was associated with lethality rate per 10,000 occupational injuries in the report of ILOSTAT. The lethality rate of occupational injury reported by each country might not reflect the actual lethality, but under-reported nonfatal occupational injuries, probably relating to freedom of the press.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2856
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec 14


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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