Skip to Content
View site list


Pre-Bid Projects

Pre-Bid Projects

Click here to see Canada’s most comprehensive listing of projects in conceptual and planning stages


WSIB increases occupational disease awareness during Cancer Awareness Month

WSIB increases occupational disease awareness during Cancer Awareness Month

TORONTO — April is Cancer Awareness Month and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) is taking the opportunity to increase awareness of occupational diseases.

The WSIB aims to enhance workers’ knowledge. They need to know that work may cause their illnesses. Early detection of occupational diseases is crucial, the board states.

In 2023 alone, the WSIB approved over 23,000 occupational disease claims and provided $79.5 million in benefits and supports to those affected, states a release. Of these, 329 claims were for work-related cancers, making up $32.7 million of the benefits paid, almost half of the total paid for all occupational disease claims.

“One of the biggest barriers for us in providing care and support for people with occupational cancer is the fact that affected people and their health care providers often do not make the connection that their disease may be work-related,” said Dr. Aaron Thompson, WSIB’s chief medical officer, in a statement. “It’s important for physicians to consider potential occupational causes when someone gets a cancer diagnosis. If workplace exposures caused someone’s cancer, they need to be made aware and encouraged to submit a claim to the WSIB.”

In an effort to help remedy the lack of awareness, the WSIB funds the Workplace Health Champions Program for Ontario’s six medical schools to ensure medical students are trained in important aspects of occupational medicine.

“One of the most difficult aspects of occupational disease adjudication is putting together the puzzle of past exposures and how they may relate to a person’s disease,” said Sal Cavaricci, WSIB senior director, operations. “These claims can be quite complex, but we have well established frameworks and technical expertise for these difficult cases.”

The occupational disease team consists of trained adjudicators. They are supported by skilled occupational hygienists and specialist physicians.

Possible work-related claims should always be reported and there is no time limit for submitting an occupational disease claim given the time that can elapse between an exposure at the workplace and the onset of an illness. If someone believes their cancer may be work-related, they may be eligible for services and support so they should contact the WSIB, the release states.

Recent Comments

Your comment will appear after review by the site.

You might also like