Work-related injury is a major public health problem resulting in serious social and economic consequences worldwide. Annually, 271 million people suffer work-related injuries, and 2 million die as a consequence. The economic loss associated with work-related injury and disease is equivalent to 4% of the worlds gross national product.
In Canada, 8 out of every 100 workers file a workers compensation claim for work-related injury or illness each year, costing over $6 billion (CDN) in 2005. Since underreporting of work-related injury is common these numbers likely represent underestimates. Work-related injuries can be classified into three groups: 1) human (demographics, experience, stress reactions, knowledge, and attitudes); 2) job content (design of tasks, job schedules); and 3) environment (physical hazards, social and organizational factors, and physical stressors). But in reality, work-related injuries result from a complex interaction between multiple risk factors. Exposure to physical, mechanical and chemical hazards and the performance of unsafe practices by workers are the leading causes of work-related injuries. Similarly, psychosocial factors, work arrangements, socio-demographic characteristics of workers, and environmental and social conditions are other potential risk factors for work-related injury.
Last date updated on March, 2021