Occupational dermatitis is a skin disorder caused by coming into contact with certain substances in the workplace. It is therefore termed contact dermatitis. Contact dermatitis is the most common work related disease in Ireland. It can have long term consequences for workers health and in extreme cases it can hinder their ability to continue working. Research has indicated that 10 years after the condition first occurs, up to 50% of affected workers will still have some skin problems.
It has financial implications in terms of ongoing medical treatment, absence from work, social welfare compensation and possible civil claims. It brings other costs in terms of pain and suffering to affected workers. In many instances it may be totally preventable by simple inexpensive measures.