Communiqué of the French Health Insurance Fund on Fixacouette® :

The occupational difficulties of hotel housekeepers

What is a MSD ?

A housekeeper’s work involves uncomfortable postures and repetitive movements throughout the day.
Among the many tasks involved in their work, making beds causes severe strain on the back and upper limbs.

In addition to increasing the risk of accidents at work, this strenuous activity leads to musculoskeletal disease, or MSD, in the wrists, elbows, shoulders and back. MSD represent 80% of cases of occupational illness recognized by the French Social Security system.

The appearance of these diseases increases with age.

In terms of psychology, the effect of stress on one's health must also be taken into account. While this is more difficult to measure, housekeepers are subject to the pressure of having a significant number of rooms to clean in a day's time (between 14 and 18 on average). Moreover, they are often forced to adapt to changes at a moment’s notice: a room that must be cleaned more quickly because a guest has arrived early, one that is rescheduled for later in the day because a guest is arriving late, changes to the cleaning schedule, a room that has been left a complete mess and will require more time than usual, stains discovered on clean linens that must be replaced at the office, etc.

The consequences:

Across the country, one in 25 employees are victim of occupational accidents or illness, for a total of 700,000 people affected every year. One in ten are assigned a disability status by the Social Security. This situation generates approximately 47 million days of work stoppage for a cost of €8 billion.

For companies, this situation means finding answers to reduce absenteeism, avoid incapacity and reduce the cost of premiums.

Fixacouette® and the French Labor Code:

Fixacouette® is one step that employers can take to protect the physical and mental health of its housekeepers.

It is an example of the technical measures that employers may implement under Article L4124-1 on a preventative basis, i.e. to:
- Avoid risks,
- Combat the risk at the source,
- Adapt the work to the human being, especially as regards the design of workstations, as well as the choice of work equipment and methods of work and production to limit repetitive work and reduce its effects on workers’ health,
- Keep apace with developments in technology,
- Plan prevention by incorporating technology, working conditions and work organization into coherent action...

Equipping your establishment with Fixacouette® means:

- Giving your housekeepers a tool to make their work easier,
- Making the task of changing beds more efficient,
- Increasing the comfort of a task that is difficult for a housekeeper working alone: removing and replacing the duvet cover,
- Working towards the recognition of this arduous work that requires constant improvement to working methods,
- Offering the industry a new image by offering better working conditions, which could make hiring easier,
- Improving your guests’ experience with a perfectly-made bed,
- Actively contributing to sustainable employment: work together to put innovation at the heart of your business and improve working conditions.

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