Let's talk about your occupation... and cancer prevention

01 Jun 2021

You may get cancer due to prolonged exposure to carcinogenic (cancer-causing) particles within the workplace. Leaving your job to prevent cancer is clearly an extreme measure, so it is important to protect yourself properly at work and conduct regular health check-ups following possible exposure.

Here’s what we know:

  1. Over 5,000 cases of cancer per year may be due to occupational exposure to carcinogens.
  2. Exposure is most common amongst farmers, drivers, transport workers, and those in trade industries, and is more common in males.
  3. Skin cancer is considered an occupational cancer for those impacted by direct sun exposure.
  4. Workplace cancer is more common in those who are regularly exposed to industrial chemicals, dusts, metals, and combustion products, including asbestos and engine exhaust.
  5. Sedentary behaviour in office workers contributes to a higher risk of cancer morbidity.


  • Prevention is better than cure! See here for workplace prevention resources
  • Cancer can develop over many years, so during check-ups tell your GP your occupation and the types of carcinogens you are exposed to.
  • Compensation for work-related cancers is available in many circumstances.

Read more about Can Too’s investment in cancer research, and everyday strategies for cancer prevention.