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HSE launches health and work strategy

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has launched a new strategy for health in the workplace in the UK.

The Health and Work strategy is launching at a time when stress and musculoskeletal disorders account for around 80 per cent of all working time lost due to illness, according to HSE.

There are also around 12,000 deaths each year from occupational lung diseases, accounting for 90 percent of estimated deaths related to past exposures at work.

Work related illness affected around 1.3 million workers and nearly 26 million working days were lost because of it, the HSE said, with the economic costs totalling more than £9 billion per year for new cases alone.

HSE estimates that a quarter of all enforcement notices issued to dutyholders concern issues around health in the workplace.

The strategy is underpinned by 19 sector plans, based on industry type and risk profile. For each sector there is a draft plan covering its health and safety performance, the top three strategic priorities for the next three to five years, and actions the HSE proposes to take.

An online page has been developed, allowing stakeholders and the public to view and download the strategy, and to post views and comments as part of the engagement process.

The Minister of State for Disabled People, Health and Work, Penny Mordaunt MP pledged her support for the new strategy. The announcement was also supported by HSE Chair, Martin Temple.