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Take time to observe Workers Memorial Day

April 28, 2010 is Workers Memorial Day, a day to recognize the sacrifice of workers who died or sustained work-related injuries this past year.

In 2008, 5,071 U.S. workers died from occupational injuries, while it is estimated that 49,000 deaths annually are attributed to work-related illnesses, according to Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Review, April 23 [1] During that same period approximately 4.6 million workers sustained a non-fatal work-related injury or illness requiring 40-50% to be transferred from jobs, placed on work restrictions, or take time away from work.

Editor’s note: For a healthcare worker’s perspective on this day, see “Finding safety in poetry on Workers’ Memorial Day [2].” It‘s a tribute to a nurse who succumbed to hepatitis C from a needlestick at work.