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The Facts

Occupational Dermatitis is a serious problem – the working time lost can be problematic for both staff and businesses. Many cases will result in an average of two months away from work and if it is not treated quickly and effectively, more serious long-term problems may develop.

Skin Protection Facts

  • Skin disorders are the most common form of occupational disease accounting for approximately 13.5% of all occupational illnesses
  • Recent studies show up to 40% of workers will suffer skin issues at some point in their working life
  • More than ½ of working time lost through industrial diseases is due to dermatitis
  • It has been found that 75% of patients with occupational dermatitis developed chronic skin disease
  • Occupational skin problems are severely under-reported – ‘Tip of the iceberg’ - The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union estimate by as much as 400%

Skin Hygiene Facts

  • Hands are the single most effective method of spreading germs, yet over half of all workers do not know the basics of hand washing
  • At least 40% of workers do not wash their hands often, or long enough, to protect against the spread of germs
  • 65% of maintenance and construction workers and 47% of office workers wash their hands less than five times a day
  • Average hand washing duration is less than 10 seconds, missing vital areas where germs are commonly found e.g. under finger nails and the backs of hands
  • Studies have shown that good hand hygiene practices can reduce illness, sickness absence and associated costs by a minimum of 18% and up to 40%

Sources: copies of source data available from Deb Group

Hands are the single most effective method of spreading germs, yet over half of all workers do not know the basics of hand washing.