Community news|28/05/24

Mental health at work: the European Forum of occupational injuries Insurance takes a stance on the subject

Home > The news of EUROGIP and occupational risks in Europe > Mental health at work: the European Forum of occupational injuries Insurance takes a stance on the subject

The European Forum of Insurance against Accidents at Work and Occupational Diseases has just adopted a joint position of its 21 Member countries, stating that it is “very concerned” about calls to add anxiety, depression and burnout to the European list of occupational diseases.

“The causes of these disorders are often multiple and can originate in both the professional and private environment. There is insufficient evidence to prove that mental illnesses originate in the workplace. Therefore, for the time being, they should not be included in the list of occupational diseases.

In-depth research and new medical knowledge are needed to establish the causal link between mental stress and mental illness and work-related factors, which will make it possible to define occupational diseases in the workplaces and populations most affected.

The European Forum welcomes research activities in this area, both in terms of prevention and causality. However, the medical societies concerned and the World Health Organisation (WHO) define burnout as a syndrome rather than a disease. Recognising burnout as an occupational disease would mean departing from current regulations and established systems.

Moreover, the recognition and compensation of occupational diseases falls within the freedom of Member States to organise their social security systems, as provided for in Article 153(4) TFEU. The transformation of this recommendation into a directive with legally binding obligations to include diseases in the list of occupational diseases, as requested by the European Parliament”.

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