Management information: Coronavirus (COVID-19) disease reports
Made by employers to HSE and Local Authorities since 10 April 2020
Where a worker has been diagnosed as having COVID-19 and there is reasonable evidence to suggest that it was caused by occupational exposure, employers are required to report the case to the relevant enforcing authority under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR).
Latest published figures up to week ending 18 September 2021 show:
- over the period 10 April 2020 to 18 September 2021, 35,704 disease notifications of COVID-19 in workers where occupational exposure is suspected were reported to enforcing authorities (HSE and LAs), including 415 death notifications. (See notes 2 and 3 below).
- by month: There were 703 reports in August 2021, a similar level to the 741 reports received in July and markedly lower than the 5,710 reports received during the January 2021 peak. (See note 3 below).
- by week: The number of weekly reports generally continues to fluctuate at around 100-200 reports per week, with an average of 181 reports per week over the last 3 weeks. This is well below the previous peak in January (1,707 reports made in week ending 23 January). (See note 3 below).
Total suspected occupational COVID-19 reports made by employers to the Enforcing Authorities, 10 April 2020 to 18 Septemer 2021
|Month||Number of reports|
Total suspected occupational COVID-19 reports made by employers to the Enforcing Authorities, 21 March 2021 to 18 September 2021
|Week commencing||Number of reports|
|Week commencing||3 week average|
Focus on reports made in the last 13-week period (20 June to 18 September 2021):
- Total of 2,137 notifications of COVID-19 in workers reported over latest 13 weeks, 20 June to 18 September 2021. The weekly numbers of reports received over this period continue to fluctuate around 100 to 200 reports per week, although in the most recent week there were 282 reports.
- Around 45% of all reports received since 20 June 2021 are for workers in the Health and Social Work sector (including for example hospitals, residential homes and day care), although the actual percentages may be higher as it is known that many reports for this sector get mis-classified by employers, particularly to the accommodation sector and to other personal services.
- Other sectors with a sizable number of reports over this period include education (10% of reports in last 13 weeks), public administration and defence (6%) and manufacturing (6%). It should be noted though that the RIDDOR notification system suffers from widespread under-reporting which has the potential to give a distorted view of both the scale and spread of cases by important risk factors such as industry sector.
- Seventy-nine per cent of worker COVID-19 reports received over this period were from workplaces in England, 9% in Wales and 13% in Scotland. The number of reports by country can be affected by reporting of multiple cases by individual employers (see also note 3 below).
For more details of these breakdowns see table in the link below.
All cases that are reported to HSE and Local Authorities are assessed and investigations initiated where incidents meet our published Incident Selection Criteria. We are unable to comment on individual investigations at this time.
- The statutory disease reporting form was changed on 10 April 2020 to enable systematic identification of COVID-19 reports. Guidance was also issued on this date around reporting requirements for COVID-19 deaths under RIDDOR. While some COVID reports may have been made prior to 10 April 2020, they will not be consistent with later time periods. Therefore, the data considers reports from 10 April 2020 onwards only.
- Data is as reported by employers. While individual cases are reviewed by the relevant enforcing authority, these counts do not reflect the outcome of these reviews. It should also be noted that as the data is ‘as-reported’ by employers there is potential for some error in some of the reported data items. In particular, there is potential for some non-fatal COVID-19 cases to have been reported as fatal and vice versa.
- This data is intended to provide an indicator of the numbers being reported to the enforcing authorities and how this changes over time rather than an accurate count of the absolute number of occupational COVID-19 cases. It should be noted that many of the reports made reflect historic cases, sometimes from up to several months ago.
Advance notice: Next planned update
These numbers will next be updated at 10am on Monday 1 November to cover the period ending 23 October 2021.