The 2016 Eurogip Discussions (“les Débats d’EUROGIP”), held in March on the subject of work-related mental disorders in Europe, aimed to clarify things, because this is a complex subject.
First, the concepts of suffering at work are not always precisely defined. Epidemiological data and research work are often missing, especially regarding job burn-out, and doctors, at least in France, are far too absent from the current debate.
Moreover, certain “paradoxes” were underlined in the approaches. For example, the European Commission lists psychosocial risk prevention among the priorities of its Strategic Framework on Health and Safety at Work for 2014-2020, but does not register these disorders on the European list of occupational diseases.
At the national level also, behind an apparent diversity of approaches, one notes a certain consensus. For example, although work-related mental disorders do not appear on the national lists of occupational diseases, they can usually be recognized as such under the complementary system or the proof system. Only Finland has decided not to do so, standing apart from the four other countries represented at the Discussions (Denmark, France, Italy and Sweden).
Several participants agreed in emphasizing the need for a paradigm change. They considered that, without abandoning this possibility of compensation for work-related mental disorders, emphasis really had to be placed on their prevention. The participants in the roundtable on the various approaches to the promotion of mental health at work described the actions that they have carried out successfully. Here again, there was a consensus on the need for cooperation between the players, both at the political level (between the Ministries of Health and Labour), between the social partners and enterprises, and between management and the health services.
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