Recognition of COVID-19 with occupational origin: a comparison between European countries.

Nys E, Pauwels S, Ádám B, Amaro J, Athanasiou A, Bashkin O, Bric TK, Bulat P, Caglayan C, Guseva Canu I, Cebanu S, Charbotel B, Cirule J, Curti S, Davidovitch N, Dopelt K, Fikfak MD, Frilander H, Gustavsson P, Höper AC, Kiran S, Kogevinas M, Kudász F, Kolstad HA, Lazarevic SB, Macan J, Majery N, Marinaccio A, Mates D, Mattioli S, McElvenny DM, Mediouni Z, Mehlum IS, Merisalu E, Mijakoski D, Nena E, Noone P, Otelea MR, Pelclova D, Pranjic N, Rosso M, Serra C, Rushton L, Sandal A, Schernhammer ES, Stoleski S, Turner MC, van der Molen HF, Varga M, Walusiak-Skorupa J, Straif K, Godderis L

Occup Environ Med 80 (12) 694-701 [2023-11-23; online 2023-11-23]

This study aims to present an overview of the formal recognition of COVID-19 as occupational disease (OD) or injury (OI) across Europe. A COVID-19 questionnaire was designed by a task group within COST-funded OMEGA-NET and sent to occupational health experts of 37 countries in WHO European region, with a last update in April 2022. The questionnaire was filled out by experts from 35 countries. There are large differences between national systems regarding the recognition of OD and OI: 40% of countries have a list system, 57% a mixed system and one country an open system. In most countries, COVID-19 can be recognised as an OD (57%). In four countries, COVID-19 can be recognised as OI (11%) and in seven countries as either OD or OI (20%). In two countries, there is no recognition possible to date. Thirty-two countries (91%) recognise COVID-19 as OD/OI among healthcare workers. Working in certain jobs is considered proof of occupational exposure in 25 countries, contact with a colleague with confirmed infection in 19 countries, and contact with clients with confirmed infection in 21 countries. In most countries (57%), a positive PCR test is considered proof of disease. The three most common compensation benefits for COVID-19 as OI/OD are disability pension, treatment and rehabilitation. Long COVID is included in 26 countries. COVID-19 can be recognised as OD or OI in 94% of the European countries completing this survey, across different social security and embedded occupational health systems.

Category: Social Science & Humanities

Type: Journal article

PubMed 37984917

DOI 10.1136/oemed-2022-108726

Crossref 10.1136/oemed-2022-108726

pii: oemed-2022-108726

Publications 9.5.0