Methods and data sources


A worker who is compensated for a workplace-related illness or injury that resulted in missing work is captured in the provincial compensation board’s time-loss database. This database captures job information such as a worker’s occupation and industry of work associated with the claim. The ODSS was created by linking this source of job information to administrative health databases.

To identify disease cases, the ODSS cohort of 2.4 million workers was linked to tumour registry data, hospital records, ambulatory care records, and physician billing records. By combining occupation and industry from time-loss compensation claims data with disease information from administrative health databases, the ODSS provides an efficient approach to study work-related diseases.

Data Sources

Workplace Safety and Insurance Board’s Time-Loss Claims Database
Occupation and industry data for 2.4 million Ontario workers.

Ontario Health Insurance Plan’s (OHIP) Registered Persons Database
Helps link WSIB records to health databases.

Ontario Cancer Registry
Tumour registry data to identify cancer cases.

OHIP eClaims Database
Physician billing records to identify diseases other than cancer.

National Ambulatory Care Reporting System
Ambulatory care records such as day surgery, outpatient clinic and emergency department visits to identify diseases other than cancer.

Discharge Abstract Database
Inpatient hospitalization records to identify diseases other than cancer.