OCCUPATIONAL DISEASES ► RECOGNITION, COMPENSATION AND PREVENTIONglobal burden. The 2 million people estimated to die from work-related diseases every year and the further 160 million estimated non-fatal cases cause not only immense human suffering, but also major economic losses estimated at around 4 per cent of the world’s gross domestic product in terms of direct and indirect costs.
Decent work can only be achieved by tackling this problem. The Governing Body, the executive body of the ILO, has recently confirmed that prevention of occupational diseases is a central element of the Decent Work Agenda, calling on the International Labour Office to intensify the work on the prevention of occupational diseases. There are many challenges ahead as occupational diseases continue to increase in many countries. There is an urgent need to improve systems for prevention, identification, recording and compensation of occupational diseases.
More than half of countries do not provide statistics for occupational diseases associated with little capacity for workers’ health surveillance.
Such systems are lacking in most developing countries, but maintaining and expanding work on prevention of occupational and other emerging work-related disorders during recession is also a challenge for developed countries. Traditional occupational diseases such as pneumoconiosis are still widespread and growing; others such as mental and musculoskeletal disorders are becoming a major cause of concern in developed and developing countries alike.
- the German Federal Association for Occupational Safety and Health (Basi)
- Messe Düsseldorf
- the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs of Germany
- the International Social Security Association (ISSA)
- the International Association of Labour Inspection (IALI)
- the World Health Organization (WHO)