The Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) has flagged the month of August as Tradies National Health month, an initiative aimed at raising awareness around workplace health and safety risks.
Currently one in every five serious workplace-related injuries involves a tradesman.
Beyond workplace injuries and accidents, tradies are also experience the highest number of musculoskeletal conditions and other health and safety risks than any profession.
Nearly one in every five serious workplace-related injuries involves a tradie*. Within the manufacturing industry, there was an average of 60 claims each day from employees who required one or more weeks’ off work because of work-related injury or disease between 2007–12*.
APA National President Marcus Dripps said the association started Tradies National Health Month to raise awareness among tradies that they shouldn’t ignore their health in the workplace.
“Many tradie jobs are physically demanding but this doesn’t need to be done by ignoring pain.
“Despite the majority of tradies relying on their musculoskeletal health to do their jobs, many continue to ignore aches, pains and body stress – which often means an early retirement, or worse, living with a disability and debilitation,” he said.
Musculoskeletal health is a major issue in Australia estimated to cost $20.9 billion in direct health and lost productivity costs*. “Tradies are among the highest at risk so it is imperative early intervention and treatments such as physiotherapy become the norm among this group,” Mr Dripps said.
During August, the APA and Steel Blue will promote health and safety tips for tradies as physiotherapists visit construction sites around the country. Tradies and trade companies can register and be involved in this important initiative here.