A disease that an employee develops as the result of exposure to particular substances, working conditions, or employment requirements. Individuals who contract occupational diseases may be entitled to compensation under state workers’ compensation statutory systems. For example, the Pennsylvania Occupational Disease Act provides compensation for employees who contract occupational diseases. The Act lists “poisoning by benzol,” “infection of inflammation of the skin due to oils,” “asbestosis. . . from handling asbestos,” “diseases of the heart and lungs,” “poisoning by arsenic, lead, [or] mercury” as some examples as occupational diseases.
[Last updated in April of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]