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2019 Work-related stress

The latest workplace injury and ill health statistics for Great Britain have been published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

These annual statistics cover work-related ill health, workplace injuries and fatalities, working days lost, costs to Britain and enforcement action taken. The statistics are compiled from a variety sources including the Labour Force Survey (LFS), fatal and non-fatal injuries as per RIDDOR together with other sources of data.

It estimates that in 2018/19 there were 1.4 million work-related ill-health cases (new or long-standing) and there were 581,000 workplace injuries.

A subsidiary report focuses on work-related stress, depression or anxiety (SDA). Over the same time period 602,000 workers reported they were suffering from work-related SDA (new or long-standing). The study also found that 12.8 million working days were lost due to work-related stress, depression or anxiety. The previous year reported 15.4 million (and less people).

2019 work-related stress, depression or anxiety

1. In the past year, 246,000 workers suffering from a new case of work-related SDA.
2. Working days lost due to stress, depression or anxiety accounted 54% (previous 44%) of all working days lost due to ill-health. This equates to an average of 21.1 days lost per case.
3. In 2018/19 work-related stress, depression and anxiety accounted for 44% of all work-related ill-health
4. The average prevalence of work-related SDA across all industries was 1,380 cases per 100,000 workers averaged over 2016/17-2018/19
5. Education, human health and social work as well as public administration and defence sectors each had statistically significantly higher rate than average for all industries.
6. Professional occupations had a statistically significantly higher rate of work-related stress than other types of jobs. For the three-year period averaged over 2016/17-2018/19, the Professional occupations category had 2,150 (2,090) cases per 100,000 workers compared with 1,380 (1,320) cases for all occupational groups.
7. Females, 2,020 (1,950) continue to have a statistically significantly higher rates of work-related SDA than males 1,490 (1,370) cases per 100,000 workers when compared with the average for all persons.

Data sources

The HSE's work-related stress, depression or anxiety statistics are created using two different data sources.

The preferred data source is the Labour Force Survey; a quarterly household survey of around 37,000 households across Great Britain which provides information about the labour market.

HSE commissions a suite of questions in the LFS to gain a view of work-related illness based on individuals’ perceptions. The LFS provides national estimates and corresponding rates of the overall prevalence of self-reported work-related illness (both long standing and new cases) during the previous 12 months.

In addition to the LFS, HSE also gathers information on work-related stress through the Health and Occupation Research Network for general practitioners across Great Britain. This network asks reporting GPs to assess whether new cases of mental ill-health presented in their surgeries are work-related, and if so, what was the work-related cause of this disorder.


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