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Surveillance work-related infectious diseases : Analysis work-related infectious diseases 2009

Surveillance Arbeidsgerelateerde Infectieziekten : Analyse arbeidsgerelateerde infectieziekten 2009


The number of notifications of infectious diseases that were contracted during work is low in 2009 in the Netherlands; it represents only 1-2% of the total number of notifications of infectious diseases. Often the relationship with work is not registered or the source of infection is unknown. Research commissioned by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment (SZW) and carried out by the Center for Infectious Disease Control and Prevention (CIb) from the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), shows that, in comparison to previous years, a slight increase in notifications is observed. With this research, SZW aims to gather knowledge on work-related infectious diseases and share this knowledge with employers, employees and occupational health professionals, in order to enable them to take measures. An analysis was made of both the registration system for notifiable diseases at the RIVM (Osiris) and the registration system for occupational diseases at the Netherlands Center for Occupational Diseases (NCvB). In 2009 154 work-related infectious diseases were reported in Osiris and 155 in the NCvB. This was more than in previous years. When registering in Osiris, questions about the contracted disease are being asked. In August 2009 questions were added about the exposure of employees to infectious diseases while working. This provides insight in the relationship between occupations, different types of work and different infectious diseases. Public Health Services use Osiris to report infectious diseases. More than 50% of the work-related notifications in Osiris were related to working activities abroad. The increase in work-related notifications in Osiris, however, is largely due to Q-fever. Malaria and hepatitis B are also frequently reported as work-related diseases. In contrast, the majority of the work-related diseases reported by occupational health professionals to the NCvB register concerned healthcare workers and people working with animals. The diseases included intestinal infections, zoonoses, tuberculosis and skin infections.

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