Significantly fewer occupational illnesses last year

Preliminary annual figures for 2023 published by the German social accident insurance institutions



Zoom Image

The number of reports of suspected occupational illnesses fell by more than 60 per cent in 2023. (Photo: )

The number of reports of suspected occupational diseases fell by more than 60 per cent in 2023. The number of recognised occupational diseases also fell accordingly to 72,747 (-63.5 percent). This is according to preliminary figures from the German social accident insurance institutions for the past year, which were published today by the German Social Accident Insurance (DGUV).

"This decline is almost entirely due to corona," says DGUV Director General Dr Stefan Hussy. "The accident insurance institutions are now receiving significantly fewer reports of suspected occupational coronavirus infections among employees." A regular special survey on COVID-19 as an occupational disease revealed that 64,733 suspected cases were reported last year. In the same period, the social accident insurance institutions recognised 53,592 cases. This was significantly fewer than in previous years. "This decline follows the general trend in the incidence of infection and is therefore not surprising."

Suspected cases of all other occupational diseases were therefore at the same level as in 2019.

Number of accidents at work falls slightly

According to DGUV statistics, 785,164 reportable accidents at work occurred in German companies last year. This corresponds to a slight decrease of 0.3 per cent. On the other hand, there was an increase in commuting accidents. With 184,189 accidents, 6.3 per cent more accidents occurred on the way to work than in the previous year. In contrast, the number of fatal accidents at work and on the way to work fell to the lowest level in the history of social accident insurance: 610 in 2023, compared to 671 in the previous year.

Number accidents at school exceeds one million

The figures for the schools accident insurance in 2023 are also in line with the pre-coronavirus period. The number of school accidents exceeded the one million mark for the first time since 2020. The number of accidents on the way to and from school rose to just over 90,000.

The number of fatal accidents at school and on the way there rose from 25 in 2022 to 31 last year.

Note: In schools accident insurance, the threshold for mandatory reporting is significantly lower than for accidents at work. While accidents at work only have to be reported if the insured person is unable to work for four days or more, in the case of a school accident it is sufficient for the insured person to have sought medical treatment.


DGUV - Pressestelle
Glinkastraße 40
10117 Berlin

Tel.: +49 30 13001-1414

Britta Ibald (Pressesprecherin)
Stefan Boltz (Pressesprecher)
Elke Biesel (Stv. Pressesprecherin)