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Occupational morbidity in Ukraine during the COVID-19 pandemic: an epidemiological analysis

ISSN 2223-6775 Ukrainian journal of occupational health Vol.18, No 1, 2022

Occupational morbidity in Ukraine during the COVID-19 pandemic: an epidemiological analysis

Nagorna A.M.
SI "Kundiev Institute of Occupational Health of National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine", Kyiv

Full article (PDF), UKR

Introduction. A report by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labor Organization (ILO) (2021) states that occupational diseases and injuries claimed 1.9 million lives in 2016, mainly due to diseases of the respiratory and cardiovascular systems. In recent years, Ukraine has seen a gradual decline in occupational morbidity; and in-depth analysis of data shows that statistics do not fully reveal the complexity of the current situation in occupational pathology, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, when there is a decline in attention in all industries except health care.

The purpose of the study is to identify patterns of occupational morbidity in Ukraine in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Materials and methods of research. The dynamics of 2011-2020 provides a description of occupational diseases using the principle of continuous statistical sampling of primary documents compiled for all cases of newly discovered and registered occupational diseases in Ukraine. A separate analysis of occupational diseases for 2018-2019 compared to 2020, during the pandemic COVID-19 was performed.

Research results and their discussion. Occupational diseases indicators have a constant downward trend due to changes in the system of sanitary and epidemiological control over working conditions, medical care for employees, imperfect accounting and registration of occupational diseases. In 2020, 3,054 cases of occupational diseases related to Covid-19 were registered. The pandemic has reduced the attention of professionals to the problem of occupational diseases among industrial workers.

Conclusions. The number of employees in the main sectors of the economy in conditions that do not meet sanitary and hygienic norms and requirements is 29.6% of the registered number of full-time employees. There is a constant decrease in the registered number of patients and a decline in the level of occupational diseases in the dynamics of 2011-2020. In the structure of occupational diseases, the first place belongs to diseases of dust aetiology (40-83%), the second to diseases of the musculoskeletal system (about 21.2-40.0%), the third to vibration disease (3.0-9.0%), fourth to neurosensory deafness (2.6-6.0%) and occupational pathology of chemical origin (2.4-3.6%). A comparative analysis of occupational diseases levels for 2018-2020 shows that the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the ratio of indicators towards reduction or stabilization, which depends on reducing the attention of health professionals and society to identify occupational diseases among workers in various industries, except health care.

The main circumstances that led to occupational diseases in 2020 include imperfection of the technological process (33.1%), non-compliance of collective and individual protection with the established requirements and their insufficiency, non-use of personal protection (10.8%) and imperfection of mechanisms and tools (10.0%).

Key words: occupational diseases, types of economic activity, accounting and registration.


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