Designing a Household Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses: Converting the SOII into the HSOII

Lisa Lee, Kristen Neishi, David Gleicher, Robin L. Kaplan, Nola du Toit, and Kennon R. Copeland


The Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) is the primary source of information for the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses. In this surveillance system, sampled employers maintain logs of workplace injuries and illnesses that occur to workers during the calendar year that meet recordability requirements established by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. The SOII estimates are subject to underreporting due to potential filtering effects of injury and illness reporting that can lead both employers and workers to not report in-scope injuries or illnesses. Employers may underreport injuries and illnesses to keep injury and illness rates low. Further, they may be unaware of reportable events when workers do not report incidents to avoid losing their job or other opportunities. One way to reduce underreporting due to filtering effects of employer reporting of injuries and illnesses is to collect this information directly from workers. NORC assisted BLS in developing and testing a questionnaire for a household survey on occupational injuries and illnesses (HSOII).