Annex 2 - Module of questions on work-related illness

Questions commissioned by the HSE were included in the Winter quarter from 2001 (December 2001 – February 2002) and the first quarter from 2007 (January 2007-March 2007) of the Labour Force Survey (LFS).

ILLWRK - Core question

(Apart from the accident you have told me about,) within the last twelve months have you suffered from any illness, disability or other physical or mental problem that was caused or made worse by your job or work done in the past?

  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. Don't know [*]

[*] this option only available for proxy interviews

Coverage: Applies to all respondents who are working or who have ever been employed.
Note: A routing error in 2008 Q1(2007/08) and 2009 Q1(2008/09) restricted the coverage to respondents working in the last 12 months rather than ever worked.
Data available: 2001/02, 2003/04-2011/12 and each year from 2013/14

The question refers to any illness, disability or problem that was caused or made worse by their work. It is only asked of people who have ever been employed. The illness, disability or problem must be one caused or made worse by work, but the original cause, or worsening of the condition due to work, could have been work before the 12 month period. However to be eligible for these question the respondent must have suffered from the effects or symptoms of this work-related illness, disability or other physical/mental problem at some point during the past 12 months.

NUMILL - Core question

How many illnesses have you had (in the last twelve months) that have been caused or been made worse by your work?

Enter a numeric value between 1 and 8 (for 8 or more illnesses, code as 8).

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work)
Data available: 2001/02, 2003/04-2011/12 and each year from 2013/14

The remainder of the questions refer to the respondent's most serious illness.

TYPILL - Core question

How would you describe this illness?

  1. Bone, joint or muscle problems which mainly affect (or is mainly connected with) arms, hands, neck or shoulder,
  2. Bone, joint or muscle problems which mainly affect (or is mainly connected with) hips, legs or feet,
  3. Bone, joint or muscle problems which mainly affect (or is mainly connected with) back,
  4. Breathing or lung problems,
  5. Skin problems,
  6. Hearing problems,
  7. Stress, depression or anxiety,
  8. Headache and/or eyestrain,
  9. Heart disease/attack, other circulatory system,
  10. Infectious disease (virus, bacteria),
  11. Other

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work)

TYPILL is still referring to the illness or disability in the last 12 months that was caused or made worse by the respondent's work. If more than one code applies, the respondent's illness has more than one effect. Code the one which the respondent says is the most serious, or affects them the most.

Data available: 2001/02, 2003/04-2011/12 and each year from 2013/14

TYPCOV

Was your illness linked to coronavirus or suspected coronavirus (COVID-19) at work?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Coverage: Applies if TYPILL= Response and worked in last 12 months (if respondent is in work or left job within the last year).
Data available: 2020/21

TYPCOV2

Do you think your illness may have been from exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19) at work?

  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. Don't know

Coverage: Applies if TYPCOV=Yes (illness linked to coronavirus at work) AND TYPILL=4 (breathing or lung problems),10 (infectious diseases, virus, bacteria)
Data available: 2020/21

COVTEST

Was your coronavirus (COVID-19) confirmed by a test?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Coverage: Applies iF TYPCOV=Yes (illness linked to coronavirus) AND TYPILL=4 (breathing or lung problems),10 (infectious diseases, virus, bacteria) AND TYPCOV2=Yes (may be from exposure to coronavirus at work)
Data available: 2020/21

WRKCON

Was your illness linked to changes in your working conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Coverage: Applies if TYPILL 1,2,3,5,6,7,8,9,11 NOT 4,10 AND worked in the last 12 months (if respondent is in work or left job within the last year)
Data available: 2020/21

AWARE - Core question

When were you first aware of this illness?  Please confirm the year and month.

  1. Within the last 12 months
  2. More than one year ago

The interviewer will read the question, but not prompt the person for an answer. The question allows the interviewer to calculate whether the response from the interviewee was in the last 12 months or not.

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work)
Data available: 2001/02, 2003/04-2011/12 and each year from 2013/14

HOW1CAUS

(Thinking about your most serious illness) Can you describe how work caused your illness or made it worse?

Code one only

  1. Manual handling (lifting/carrying/pushing/pulling),
  2. Keyboard work or repetitive action (repeating a series of movements eg assembly work),
  3. Awkward/tiring positions,
  4. Workplace accident
  5. Stress-related e.g job-demands, control, support (stress at work),
  6. Other

Coverage: Applies IF ILLWRK = 1 AND TYPILL=1,2 or 3 (if respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months which was caused / made worse from work and type of illness included bone, hips or back problems)
Data available: Each year from 2009/10 to 2011/12

HOW2CAUS

(Thinking about your most serious illness) Can you describe how work caused your illness or made it worse?

Code one only

  1. Workload (tight deadlines, too much work / pressure / responsibility),
  2. Role uncertainty (lack of clarity about job/uncertain what meant to do),
  3. Lack of control (no say over what/how to do job),
  4. Lack of support (from management),
  5. Changes at work (management/organisation/work content/use of new technology),
  6. Violence, threats or bullying,
  7. Other.

Coverage: Applies if IF ILLWRK = 1 AND TYPILL=7 or 9 (Applies if respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months which was caused / made worse from work and type of illness included stress or heart disease)
Data available: Each year from 2009/10 to 2011/12

HOW3CAUS

(Thinking about your most serious illness) Can you describe how work caused your illness or made it worse?

Code one only

  1. General work environment (uncomfortable - hot/cold/damp/wet/dry/draughts/enclosed space),
  2. By breathing in airborne materials from spray painting or manufacturing foam products,
  3. By breathing in dusts from flour or grain/cereal, animal feed or bedding (straw),
  4. By breathing in airborne materials from welding, soldering or cutting/grinding metals,
  5. By breathing in dusts from stone, cement, brick or concrete (eg during building, construction, quarrying or road maintenance work)
  6. By breathing in fumes from engine exhaust,
  7. Other

Coverage: IF ILLWRK = 1 AND TYPILL=4 (Applies if respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months which was caused / made worse from work and type of illness included lung problems)
Data available:  Each year from 2009/10 to 2011/12

TMEOFF – Core question

In the last twelve months, how much time off work have you had because of this illness

  1. No time off work,
  2. less than 1 day,
  3. 1 to 3 days (Work days),
  4. 4 to 6 days (Work days),
  5. At least 1 week but less than 2 weeks,
  6. At least 2 weeks but less than 1 month,
  7. At least 1 month but less than 3 months,
  8. At least 3 months but less than 6 months,
  9. At least 6 months but less than 9 months,
  10. At least 9 months but less than a year.

Coverage: Applies IF IllWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work) and Respondent currently in work or left last job in previous 12 months
Data available: 2001/02, 2003/04-2011/12 and each year from 2013/14

FURAY2

Thinking about this time you did not work, were you furloughed for any of that time?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Coverage: Applies to respondents TMEOFF >= 3
Data available: 2020/21

FURIC2

Did you include any furloughed periods in the time off you just told me about?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Coverage: Applies to respondents FURAY2 = 1 (was furloughed for any of the time)
Data available: 2020/21

FURTM2

In the time off you just told me about, how much of it were you furloughed?
Please code either days, weeks, months here and at the next question input the amount.

  1. Days
  2. Weeks
  3. Months

Coverage: Applies to respondents FURIC2=1 (included furlough periods in the time off told about)
Data available: 2020/21

FURTA2

Please enter the amount

Coverage: Follows on from response to FURTM2
Data available: 2020/21

WCHJB3 – Core question

May I just check, was the job that caused or made your illness worse the one you previously mentioned as...

  1. [Occupation title - main job]
  2. [Occupation title - second job]
  3. or was it some other job?

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work)
Data available: 2001/02, 2003/04-2011/12 and each year from 2013/14

WIND

Thinking about the job which caused or made your illness worse, what did the firm/organisation you worked for mainly make or do?

Enter a text of at most 80 characters

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work) and either WCHJB3=3 (some other job caused or made illness worse) OR both OCCT=EMPTY and OCCT2=EMPTY (information on occupation for both main and second job missing)
Data available: 2004/05, 2006/07, 2008/09 and 2010/11

WINDT

Enter a short text for the industry

Enter a text of at most 30 characters

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work) and either WCHJB3=3 (some other job caused or made illness worse) OR both OCCT=EMPTY and OCCT2=EMPTY (information on occupation for both main and second job missing)
Data available: 2004/05, 2006/07, 2008/09 and 2010/11

WOCCT

What was your job?

Enter a text of at most 80 characters

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work) and either WCHJB3=3 (some other job caused or made illness worse) OR both OCCT=EMPTY and OCCT2=EMPTY (information on occupation for both main and second job missing)
Data available: 2004/05, 2006/07, 2008/09 and 2010/11

WOCCD

What did you mainly do in your job?

Enter a text of at most 80 characters

The interviewer will check special qualifications / training needed to do the job

Coverage: Applies if ILLWRK=1 (Respondent suffered from an illness in last 12 months caused/made worse by work) and either WCHJB3=3 (some other job caused or made illness worse) OR both OCCT=EMPTY and OCCT2=EMPTY (information on occupation for both main and second job missing)
Data available: 2004/05, 2006/07, 2008/09 and 2010/11

Updated 2021-12-08