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Noise induced hearing loss in Great Britain

21,000 Estimated number of workers with work-related hearing problems, 2016/17 to 2018/191

Source: LFS


55 New claims for work-related deafness in 20182

Source: IIDB

New claims for work-related deafness in Great Britain from 2009 to 2018

Graph showing reduction in new claims for work-related deafness in Great Britain from 2009 t0 2018

Source: Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB)

Male / Female split of new claims for work-related deafness from 2009 to 2018

Chart showing Male / Female split of new claims for work-related deafness from 2009-2018





  • Over the last ten years, just five of the 1,235 claims were from women.
  • Differences are likely to reflect smaller numbers of women having worked in jobs that meet the eligibility criteria for this condition.

Source: Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB)

More information on Noise Induced Hearing Loss in Great Britain

There is limited information available on work-related noise induced hearing loss.  The Labour Force Survey (LFS) is HSE’s preferred data source and the Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit (IIDB) scheme is a furher source of information.  These sources present very different estimates. The LFS provides the estimated number of workers who self-report work-related ‘hearing problems’, including both new and longstanding cases. The IIDB figures include only annual new claims and these are based on a much stricter definition of ‘deafness’ in which claimants must have a substantial measured loss of hearing in both ears (greater than 50 dB).

The IIDB scheme will also tend to underestimate annual incidence for other reasons, including:

  • Cases arising from circumstances other than those covered by the terms of the prescription;
  • Individuals being unaware of the possible occupational origin of their disease;
  • A lack of knowledge regarding the availability of compensation; and
  • The scheme not including self-employed workers.

Hence, the LFS is the preferred source to judge the overall scale of the condition.

More information on the strengths and limitations of the LFS and IIDB as data sources is available on the HSE statistics website.

More information:

Notes

  1. Includes workers with new and longstanding hearing problems. Estimated using three years of the Labour Force Survey from 2016/17 to 2018/19.
  2. Latest year available for IIDB
Updated 2019-11-05