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Campaign targets work-related health issue

31 October 2022

THE INSTITUTION of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) is backing a campaign highlighting the role of psychosocial issues in work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

MSDs are the most common health problem among European workers, with around three in five people affected.

MSDs such as back and neck pain, tendinitis, hand-arm vibration syndrome and carpal tunnel syndrome are often caused and aggravated by the work environment.

European Week for Safety and Health at Work runs from 24-28 October 2022 and provides the chance to focus on this important topic.

IOSH is a long-term partner of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) and their Healthy Workplace campaigns.

The current campaign, Healthy Workplaces Lighten the Load, began in 2020 and covers eight priority areas for preventing work-related MSDs.

The latest priority is psychosocial issues, such as stress, anxiety and depression, and their role in making MSDs worse or more difficult to recover from.


We are calling on employers to take the lead in creating lasting improvements for their staff.

“MSDs have a huge impact on millions of people all over the world, both restricting their ability to do their work and also to undertake everyday tasks in their daily life,” said IOSH President Louise Hosking.

"Employers have a duty to ensure they manage the risks of MSDs. These risks vary across different industries but there are simple steps employers can take to ensure the risks are managed successfully, starting with thoroughly risk assessing the work people are doing.

“This is why IOSH is supporting the European Week for Safety and Health at Work. We urge all employers to do the same and review how they are managing MSD risks in their workplace(s).”

IOSH works with EU-OSHA and fellow campaign partners to share and promote resources , initiatives and examples of good practice in occupational safety and health (OSH).

To keep people safe and healthy at work, we collaborate with a range of internal networks and partners and encourage our 49,000-plus members across the world to get involved.


Our occupational health toolkit section on MSDs is for occupational safety and health (OSH) professionals looking to improve their knowledge.

You can also read advice on simple steps you can take to reduce work-related back painand watch the IOSH Magazine webinar on how to manage and protect the psychosocial wellbeing of staff.