§ Mr. Andrew Welsh
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what information his Department has of the incidence of respiratory disease among the Scottish agricultural work force; and what steps he is taking to promote improvement in this situation.
§ Mr. Nicholls
I have been asked to reply.
Only one case of occupational respiratory disease occurring in agricultural workers in Scotland was reported to the Health and Safety Executive under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations, 1985, in the two years 1986–87 and 1987–88, the two years for which information is available. However, data collected under the regulations is regarded as an incomplete measure of the true incidence of occupational disease.
The Executive's employment medical advisory service is about to begin a publicity campaign lasting 12 months, on occupational lung disease with the objective of increasing the awareness of employers, employees and the medical community to this group of diseases. Also, the Executive is currently supporting a project on the surveillance of occupational lung disease from reports of consultant chest physicians and occupational physicians.