Ill health is costing Britain around £100 billion each year, according to the findings of a new report.

Conducted by Dame Carol Black, the Working for a Healthier Tomorrow review recommends that, in order to reduce this hefty toll, urgent and comprehensive reforms concerning health and work need to be instituted.

She stated: "For most people, their work is a key factor in their self-worth, family esteem and identity. So if they become sick and are not helped quickly enough, they can all too easily find themselves on a downward spiral into long-term sickness and a life on benefits."

Among the recommendations made by Dame Black is the replacement of paper-based sick notes with electronic "fit notes", stating what people can do as opposed to what they cannot.

Additionally, she suggests that occupational health should be brought into the mainstream of healthcare provision.

Recently, the leaders of over 30 healthcare professional bodies joined together as part of an agreement that highlights the link between work and health.