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Executive Summary of HSE Health and Social Work Activities Statistics 2023

The 2023 HSE Report on Human Health and Social Work in Great Britain shows 309,000 workers affected by work-related ill health, with stress, depression, or anxiety being predominant. There were no fatal but about 76,000 non-fatal injuries in 2022/23. This sector, making up 14% of the workforce, has a higher rate of work-related health issues compared to other industries, including a notable incidence of musculoskeletal disorders. The total economic cost for these health issues in 2021/22 was estimated at £4.3 billion.

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Executive Summary of the HSE Report on Human Health and Social Work Activities Statistics in Great Britain, 2023

This executive summary presents key findings from the annual HSE report on human health and social work activities statistics in Great Britain, up to March 2023. The report provides a comprehensive analysis of health and safety in the human health and social work sector, including data on work-related ill health, workplace injuries, and the economic costs associated with these issues.

1. 309,000 Workers Suffering from Work-Related Ill Health

The report estimates that 309,000 workers suffered from work-related ill health, either new or long-standing, averaged over the three-year period from 2020/21 to 2022/23. This data was sourced from the Labour Force Survey (LFS). It also highlights that the rate of self-reported work-related ill health had a downward trend in the years prior to the coronavirus pandemic, but saw an increase in the recent years affected by the pandemic (Source: LFS, page 4).

2. Zero Fatal Injuries to Workers in 2022/23

In 2022/23, there were no fatal injuries to workers in the human health and social work sector. This is compared to the annual average of 1 fatality over the five-year period from 2018/19 to 2022/23. The data was sourced from the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) (Source: RIDDOR, page 4).

3. 76,000 Workers Sustained Non-Fatal Injuries

An estimated 76,000 workers sustained non-fatal injuries over the three-year period from 2020/21 to 2022/23. Similar to the trend in work-related ill health, the rate of self-reported non-fatal injuries showed a downward trend before the pandemic, and the latest rate was not statistically significantly different from the 2014/15-2016/17 period (Source: LFS, page 4).

4. Human Health and Social Work Sector Accounts for 14% of the Workforce

The human health and social work sector, defined by section Q within the 2007 Standard Industrial Classification, accounts for 14% of the workforce in Great Britain (Source: Annual Population Survey, 2022, page 6).

5. 51% of Work-Related Ill Health Cases Were Stress, Depression or Anxiety

Of the estimated 309,000 workers suffering from work-related ill health, 51% of cases were stress, depression or anxiety. This data was sourced from the LFS (Source: LFS, page 7).

6. 6.9% of Workers in the Sector Suffered from Work-Related Ill Health

Around 6.9% of workers in the human health and social work sector suffered from work-related ill health, either new or long-standing. This rate is significantly higher than the rate for workers across all industries, which stands at 4.1% (Source: LFS, page 7).

7. 61,000 Workers Suffering from a Work-Related Musculoskeletal Disorder

There were an estimated 61,000 workers suffering from a work-related musculoskeletal disorder, accounting for 20% of all ill health in the sector (Source: LFS, page 9).

8. 159,000 Workers Suffering from Work-Related Stress, Depression or Anxiety

There were an estimated 159,000 workers suffering from work-related stress, depression or anxiety, constituting 51% of all ill health in the sector (Source: LFS, page 11).

9. Rate of Contact Dermatitis 2.1 Times Higher than All Industries

The rate per 100,000 workers for Human health and social work is 2.1 times that for all industries (5.8 compared to 2.7 per 100,000 workers) (Source: THOR-EPIDERM, 2017-2019p, page 13).

10. Total Economic Cost Estimated at £4.3 Billion

The total economic cost of work-related ill health and workplace injury in the human health and social work sector in 2021/22 is estimated at £4.3 billion. This accounts for 21% of the total cost of all work-related ill health and injury, which is £20.6 billion (Source: HSE Costs to Britain, 2021/22, page 19).

Conclusion

This executive summary has highlighted key findings from the HSE report on human health and social work activities statistics in Great Britain, 2023. It has shed light on the prevalence and types of work-related ill health and injuries within the sector, the economic cost associated with these issues, and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on these trends.

Author

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Richard O'Connor is a Director at First Mats. He has deep knowledge in areas like Manufacturing, Warehousing, Marine, and Health & Safety. Richard's insights have been featured in well-known publications such as Bloomberg Business, The Sun, and Reader's Digest. His blend of industry expertise and passion for sharing makes him a sought-after voice in his fields.

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