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​HSE: “Make sure you are working safely with display screen equipment”

An employee working on a computer with good posture

In 2019/20 there were an estimated 480,000 workers affected by work-related musculoskeletal disorders. This represents 1,420 per 100,000 workers and results in an estimated 8.9 million working days lost. In 2019/20 WRMSDs accounted for 30% of all work-related ill health and 27% of all days lost due to work-related ill-health.

In one of their latest e-Bulletins, the HSE has reminded employers of their duty to protect workers from the health risks of working with DSE. The HSE website has a wealth of DSE resources to help workers with their DSE and state that employers must provide training and information surrounding DSE to staff. 

Our bodies are designed to move, but DSE can often leave our bodies in a fixed position which can cause aches, pains, fatigue and eyestrain, and it can also lead to stress. Using display screen equipment has been identified as a cause of musculoskeletal disorders by the HSE. 

So what can employers do?

  • Talk to your employees - Consult with your employees on not just DSE, but Health & Safety in general. How can you improve things for them? Your staff will be much more likely to follow procedures if they have helped design them. 
  • Provide them with training and information - Employers must provide staff with Health & Safety training and information for display screen equipment. They should also tell staff about general arrangements and how they can apply for eye tests. Consider also carrying out workstation assessments for each employee. 
  • Provide them with the right equipment for their job - Each employee will likely require different DSE equipment depending on their line of work, make sure they have suitable equipment and that they are comfortable.

See the HSE website for more information.

Is DSE training a legal requirement?

The Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations apply to workers who use DSE daily, for an hour or more at a time. We describe these workers as 'DSE users'. The regulations don't apply to workers who use DSE infrequently or only use it for a short time.


The Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment) Regulations 1992 call for employers to:

  • conduct a DSE workstation assessment, 
  • reduce risks, 
  • provide staff with training and information 
  • and provide them with an eye test if they ask for one

These regulations apply to people both at a fixed place of work, mobile workers, home workers and people who ‘hot-desk’.  

The HSE calls for DSE training to identify the risks associated with the use of DSE and how they can be avoided and what working practices can be adopted to avoid them. 

Our DSE Training does exactly this.

What’s included in the DSE course?

Our IOSH & IIRSM Approved DSE Training will look at how staff can take care of themselves and maintain maximum productivity while they’re using this equipment. This course is broken down into 4 sections: 

  1. Physical - minimise the risks to physical health when using DSE
  2. Visual - prevent visual problems that are highlighted when using DSE
  3. Stress - understand the importance of breaks and changes in activity to reduce or prevent stress
  4. Portables - prevent muscle and joint problems when carrying or using portables on the move 

By the end of our course, users will understand how to prevent aches, pains, infections, and injuries; and will have the tools to improve their posture, energy levels and overall wellbeing. Users can complete this course in just 30 minutes and all users will be given a certificate upon completing the test at the end of the course. Our DSE assessment tool is also provided for free with our DSE course! 

Get instant access today! 

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