According to a recent study out of UC Davis, work-related injuries and illnesses from high stress and risky jobs cost the nation more than $250 billion annually.
Work outranks every other single cause of healthcare expenditure. Risky, high stress jobs not only sicken and disable many, but also cause an inordinate number of fatalities. In 2010 alone, work injuries and illnesses caused 59,000 deaths. In addition, there were 8,564,600 work-related injuries on record that year and 516,100 work-related illnesses. These figures, of course, only include injuries and illnesses that were reported and that can be directly attributed to work. Certainly, many work-related illnesses don’t get reported, especially those that develop slowly as a result of constant and long-term work related stress, or long term exposure to toxic chemicals whose toxicity will not be “discovered” for another 10-20 years. Can you say asbestos? Also, mental health care related to work stress doesn’t necessarily show up in these figures, either. Jon Barron discusses the effects of work injuries and stress from risky jobs.