Our study has three specific aims:
1) To collect and compile occupational noise exposure data from government, academic, and industry sources. We will approach a variety of agencies and organizations, including US and Canadian regulatory research agencies, authors of peer-reviewed papers reporting occupational noise exposures in the US or Canada, and sources in industry which have systematically collected noise exposure data. We will collect all readily available data and compile these data into a standardized database. We will then code each measurement using a standardized occupational coding scheme.
2) To develop and validate a quantitative job exposure matrix (JEM) for noise. Once the noise exposure data are compiled and coded, we will use statistical models to develop a JEM. For each industry and occupation code in the JEM, we will estimate the mean and standard error noise exposure level; exposure variability; and the prevalence of overexposure. We will also create estimates for different time intervals for each industry and job code, with the duration and number of these intervals determined by data availability.
3) To disseminate the job exposure matrix. We will develop a web-based application which will allow researchers, occupational and public health researchers, and other interested parties to quickly and easily access the noise exposure estimates in the JEM for the purposes of assessing exposures for epidemiological studies, occupational health interventions, and other public health-oriented purposes.