A total of 23.3 million days were lost due to work-related ill health and 4.1 million days were lost due to workplace injuries, costing the economy up to £14.3 billion a year, research has found.
The study, by the Health and Safety Executive, shows the UK region with the highest number of ill health-related incidences in the workplace is the East Midlands – with a total of 4620.
Regions with the highest injury rate
An interactive map, created by Vero Solutions, shows the regions in the UK with the most work-related deaths and injuries.
Scotland is the UK region with the highest amount of fatal injuries in the workplace (20), while the East Midlands has the highest amount of non-fatal injuries (2,700).
The sectors with the most reported injuries are agriculture, forestry and fishing (4,200), construction (3,100) and finally food services (2,850) – as you would expect with industries that involve increased amounts of manual labour and risks.
Common health problems revealed
Research also revealed the most common work-related illness.These include musculoskeletal disorders, respiratory disease and skin diseases.
Around nine million working days were lost due to work-related stress, with high rates in health and social care professionals and education professional occupations.
Almost 30,000 people who worked in the last year report they currently have breathing or lung problems caused or made worse by work.
Skin disease is also common, varying form minor irritation to severe cases of dermatitis, as well as skin cancers. Working with wet hands, soaps and cleansing agents are the most common cause of skin problems like dermatitis.
Tim Young, Director at Vero Solutions, said: “These statistics show why the right health and safety provisions should always be in place. The economy as a whole is impacted by the amount of time people are taking off due to ill-health, as well as businesses themselves.
“If you are working in one of the ‘danger’ regions of the UK, ensure that your employer is responsible and is following all relevant health and safety measures as well as making sure you are following all existing procedures to keep yourself safe.
“Despite the great strides and improvements made over the last 40 years since Britain’s health and safety regime was established, there is still more that can be done and not all at a great cost to businesses.”
Source: Health and Safety Practitioner
Date Published: October 28, 2016
Author: Jonathan Brown