• STV
  • MySTV

Health checks for new construction workers 'could save £30m'

Trade body estimates health problems from construction work cost economy £66m every year.

Jobs: Construction firm in administration

Tackling work-related ill health among construction apprentices could save the Scottish economy more than £30m over the next decade, new figures suggest.

Constructing Better Health Scotland (CBH Scotland) is calling for baseline health checks for all apprentices entering the industry as part of a campaign to improve occupational health management in the sector.

It said only 27% of Scottish Building Federation members who employ apprentices provide them with a baseline health check when they join the company, according to a recent survey.

CBH Scotland said this means many new recruits at risk or those suffering from long-term health problems will go undetected and will not receive the occupational health support they need.

The body, a newly established industry-wide occupational health management scheme, estimates that the current cost of occupational ill health in the Scottish construction industry is £66m per year or £386 for every worker employed in the industry.

CBH chief executive Michelle Aldous said: "CBH Scotland has been established to work with employers to improve the long-term health and wellbeing of those working in the Scottish construction industry.

"Our research shows that proactively managing the occupational health of new building apprentices through systematic baseline health checks could save the Scottish economy more than £30m by 2024.

"These checks are easy and cost-effective to complete and will enable us to monitor and manage the occupational health of the Scottish construction workforce over time.

"At the same time, a more proactive approach to occupational health management will save industry employers and the wider economy significant sums of money in the longer term."

The campaign is being organised in conjunction with the Scottish Centre for Healthy Working Lives and employers' trade association the Scottish Building Federation (SBF).

New figures released today show that the number of construction apprentices registered in Scotland last year increased by 11% compared to 2012, according to the Scottish Building Apprenticeship and Training Council (SBATC).

In total, 149 more apprentices were registered in 2013 than during the previous year, taking the total number to 1448.

This follows five consecutive years of declining numbers from a peak of 2758 construction apprentices registered in Scotland in 2007.

CBH Scotland estimates that, assuming an annual 4% increase in apprenticeship registrations over the next decade, comprehensive baseline health checks could benefit more than 14,000 additional apprentices over that period, saving as much as #30 million in work-related ill health costs by 2024.

Vaughan Hart, a member of the CBH Scotland Board and SBF managing director, welcomed the campaign.

He added: "It's also encouraging to note that the number of apprentices coming into the industry has finally begun to recover following five years of steep decline.

"As these numbers start to grow, now is the ideal time to look at embedding a best practice approach to occupational health management into the industry.

"A majority of our members tell us they would welcome additional advice and support with occupational health matters.

"I am confident CBH Scotland will be in a position to help fulfil that role in the future."

Constructing Better Health was founded in 2006 and established CBH Scotland in April 2014.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This must be at least 6 characters long.
ShowHide
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long.
You must be over 16 to join STV.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
We need this to check that you live in an STV region.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid postcode
Would you like us to email you about our great shows and services from time to time?
We'll only send emails we think you'll like (see example) based on information you have supplied and shows you have watched on STV Player. For details on emails and advertising, see our STV & You page.
Would you like to receive emails from the Scottish Children's Lottery about draws, instant games and competitions?
We support the Scottish Children's Lottery (SCL), which is managed by our colleagues at STV ELM Ltd. You can find out more about the SCL on its website, including its Privacy Policy.

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, and understand our Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.