Cost, severity and prevalence of agricultural-related injury workers’ compensation claims in farming operations from 14 u.S. states

Navneet Kaur Baidwan, Marizen R. Ramirez, Fred Gerr, Daniel Boonstra, Joseph E. Cavanaugh, Carri Casteel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


(1) Background: There is no national surveillance of agricultural injuries, despite agricultural occupations being among the most hazardous in the U.S. This effort uses workers’ compensation (WC) data to estimate the burden of agricultural injuries and the likelihood of experiencing an injury by body part involved, cause, and nature in farming operations. (2) Methods: WC data from 2010 to 2016 provided by a large insurance company covering small to medium-sized farm operations from 14 U.S. states was used. We investigated the associations between injury characteristics and WC costs and the risk of having a more severe versus a less severe claim. The proportion of costs attributable to specific claim types was calculated. (3) Results: Of a total 1000 claims, 67% were medical only. The total cost incurred by WC payable claims (n = 866) was USD 21.5 million. Of this, 96% was attributable to more severe claims resulting in disabilities or death. The most common body part injured was the distal upper extremity. Falling or flying objects and collisions were the most expensive and common causes of injury. (4) Conclusions: Characterizing the cost and severity of agricultural injury by key injury characteristics may be useful when prioritizing prevention efforts in partnership with insurance companies and agricultural operations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4309
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 2 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Grant number: U54 OH007548—Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health (GPCAH).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • Agriculture
  • Injuries
  • Workers’ compensation

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.


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