The report shows the estimated number of workers in Great Britain suffering a work-related illness is 1.8 million with stress, depression, and anxiety make up around half of cases. The figures show there were an estimated 914,000 cases of work-related stress, depression, or anxiety in 2021/22 and an estimated 17 million working days were lost due to work-related stress, depression, or anxiety in 2021/22. This is over half of all working days lost due to work-related ill health.
The statistics also show the impact work-related ill health is having on Great Britain’s economic performance including 36.8 million working days being lost due to work-related ill health and non-fatal workplace injuries in 2021/22. In 2019/20, the annual economic cost of work-related injury and new cases of ill health (excluding long latency illnesses such as cancer) was £18.8 billion.
The figures also show that 123 workers were killed in work-related accidents in 2021/22 and a further 565,000 workers sustained a non-fatal injury.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact on the workplace. Of the 1.8 million suffering a work-related illness, an estimated 585,000 reported it was caused or made worse by the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Around a quarter of these workers were in human health and social work. In addition, 123,000 workers suffering with COVID-19 believed they were exposed to the virus at work.
HSE’s Chief Executive, Sarah Albon, said the report highlighted the need for a greater focus on worker’s wellbeing, “Stress and poor mental health is the number one cause of work-related ill health. The effects of stress, depression, and anxiety can have a significant impact on an employee’s life and on their ability to perform their best at work. Britain is one of the safest places in the world to work but we need all employers to do more and take seriously their responsibilities to support good mental health at work.”