More than 30 million working days were lost due to work-related ill health or injury, according to the latest figures, and with coughs and colds season upon us, it could get right up the noses of employers.

That’s an average of 16 days off work, 20 days for ill health cases and 7.2 days for injuries.

While that has a massive impact on individuals it also has a big effect on the business in loss of trade or business interruptions.

Stress, anxiety and depression accounted for the majority of these days which is something bosses can help address by supporting employees when they need it most.

Providing open and supportive policies at work over sickness and ill health can actually mean people feel better looked after while at work. That can have a positive impact on the time people lose.

The figures come from the HSE annual report which also shows an estimated 500,000 people were diagnosed with an illness that they contracted through their workplace environment, which is a slightly more than last year. Also similar to last year, an estimated 800,000 reported that a pre-existing health condition had been exacerbated or worsened due to their workplace conditions.

Businesses not only have a responsibility to support employees in the workplace but also protect the business from interrupted trade or loss of work as a result of incidents.

One of the ways is insurance to ensure business continuity when disaster strikes. We can be that safety net when illness hits your workforce, leaving with you to get on with running the business.