Not all occupational
diseases have been identified
- Juhani Artto) In 2007 almost 6,300 occupational
suspected occupational diseases were confirmed. Two thirds of the cases
concerned men, and in the food processing industry employees face the
biggest risk of falling victim to an occupational disease. The annual number
of confirmed cases has remained fairly stable over many consecutive years.
However, authoritative statistics, as maintained by the
Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, does not
tell the whole truth about the situation. This has
been openly admitted by Ari Kaukiainen, a senior physician at the
institute, in the June issue of the institute's
magazine Työ Terveys Turvallisuus.
He believes, that in reality, there are "significantly
more cases" than those
confirmed up until now.
In 2007 the most common occupational or suspected occupational diseases
involved noise injuries. Altogether 1,626 cases
were confirmed, out of which almost 1,500
The second largest group revolved around those suffering from various skin
diseases. There were 1,186 such cases. And one
third of these were allergic contact dermatitis cases.
Occupational skin diseases were most common in the food
processing, chemical, pulp, paper and wood
Musculoskeletal disorders were confirmed in 1,070 cases. The food
processing, textile, sewing, shoe, leather and
woodwork industries are among the most risky sectors in
regard to these disorders.
Asbestos-related diseases are still common although the material was
in Finland totally banned in
1994. In 2007 over 780 cases were confirmed