curate), nor did the committee seek to expand the evidence by searching outside the evidence package. Although the committee was aware of some NIOSH-sponsored work that did not appear in the evidence package but that the committee would have thought part of the TI Research Program, the committee decided to evaluate only what was presented to them. The committee did use its expert judgment and knowledge of the field to evaluate claims in the evidence package about the role of NIOSH-funded work in intermediate and end outcomes. The committee did not attempt to read and evaluate the quality of each research project or each dissemination product. The committee’s evaluation was informed by the evidence package, committee expertise in the field, stakeholder input, and published material. This chapter begins with a section describing the external factors that impact the work the TI Research Program undertakes, as well as the outcomes one might reasonably expect. This is followed by a section describing issues, methods, and challenges in occupational injury surveillance, which cuts across all eight program goals.
External factors “may be considered as forces beyond the control of NIOSH that may affect the evolution of the program” (see Appendix A, p. 137). They may influence NIOSH research at any phase. External factors identified by the committee that broadly impact NIOSH research activities, including those of the TI Research Program, include budgetary issues (such as congressional funding and earmarks), lack of complete occupational injury surveillance data, inadequate action by regulatory agencies such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the sharing of research responsibility with other agencies, and industry challenges; each of these is discussed below. External factors also impact the TI Research Program’s work in specific goal areas. Some of these are discussed in the sections that appear later in this chapter outlining each of the eight goals.
NIOSH was appropriated $286 million in fiscal year (FY) 2005 to carry out its mission as the sole federal agency responsible for conducting research for the prevention of occupational injury and illness (NIOSH, 2007a, p. 17). The total TI Research Program budget for all eight research goals in FY2005 was $17.2 million (see Table 1-2), an amount the committee finds to be inadequate given the scope of the TI Research Program’s mandate. More recently, the NIOSH budget has decreased; it was appropriated $255 million and $253 million for research in FY2006 and 2007, respectively (NIOSH, 2007a, p. 17). The FY2006 decrease reflected a new