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Checklist for Coding Deaths from Work-related Injuries On the Oklahoma Death Certificate

The Oklahoma Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (OKFACE) is an occupational fatality surveillance project to determine the epidemiology of fatal occupational injuries and identify and recommend prevention strategies. FACE is a program of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Division of Safety Research. The following are the criteria for coding injuries at work on the death certificate:

Complete INJURY AT WORK on the Oklahoma Death Certificate if:

  • an intentional or unintentional injury-precipitated death, AND
  • decedent's age is 14 years or over.

WORK includes activities engaged in for profit or compensation, including:

  • usual or full-time occupation
  • secondary or part-time occupation
  • unpaid family member working for family business (e.g., farm)
  • volunteer exposed to work conditions (e.g., firefighter, EMS, law enforcement).

INJURY AT WORK is YES if at the time of injury the decedent was: 

  • at the location for the purpose of work, OR
  • engaged in an activity which was a job requirement.

Examples: The following would be coded YES for INJURY AT WORK:

Homicide, suicide, or accidental death:

  • on work premises, includes parking lot, break room, locker room, rest room, storage area, and lunch room.
  • in a motor vehicle or aircraft when vehicle is considered work environment, includes taxi, bus, or truck driver, pilots, or crew.
  • in motor vehicle or aircraft when worker is traveling from one worksite to another while "on the clock" or compensated travel. Examples, farmer traveling field to field, pizza or other product delivery, or salesperson.
  • from late effects of injury at work. For example, death from sepsis secondary to quadriplegia secondary to fall from scaffold years earlier.
  • self-employed working for profit at home.

The following would be coded NO for INJURY AT WORK:

Homicide, suicide, or accidental death:

  • while engaged in recreational activities on employer controlled facilities for personal enjoyment.
  • as a visitor for non-work purposes, not on official business.
  • of a homemaker working at homemaking activities.
  • while working for self-, non profit, i.e. mowing lawn, repairing own roof, hobby, or recreational activities.
  • of a student engaged in school activities.
  • while operating vehicle (personal or commercial) for non-work purposes.
  • while commuting to or from work.

Natural deaths occurring at work are marked NO for INJURY AT WORK.


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