Study Finds Massachusetts Workers in Dangerous Jobs More Prone to Overdoses

August 10, 2018

A study has found that construction workers are six times more likely to die from opioid overdoses than all other occupations in Massachusetts.

The state Department of Public Health reported Wednesday there were more than 1,000 opioid-related deaths among construction and extraction workers between 2011 and 2015.

The study pointed to a direct correlation between work-related injuries and subsequent misuse of opioid painkillers. The more dangerous the occupation, the higher the rates of fatal overdoses.

Those who make their living through farming, fishing and forestry were also among workers with significantly higher than average death rates from overdoses.

In addition to being more prone to on-the-job injuries, the study said workers in many of these occupations tend to have less paid sick leave and less job security than other workers.

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