Cost-benefit analysis in occupational health and safety: A proposal model

By Ramos, D.; Arezes, P.; Afonso, P.

11th International Probabilistic Safety Assessment and Management Conference and the Annual European Safety and Reliability Conference 2012, PSAM11 ESREL 2012



The implementation of preventive and corrective measures within Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) lacks a proper systematic economic evaluation that allows to compare alternatives and to understand the impact of each of them. Firstly, there should be a financial evaluation of the measures considering costs and income for the organization resulting from the implementation of identified measures. However, it is also important to perform an analysis of the impact of each measure in society, in other words, to measure the involved externalities. The measures taken by an organization to prevention risks usually have an indirect positive effect (positive externality) in society, while not taking any action, compared to the cost they represent for the organization, can have important negative effects to society (negative externality). It follows that these different economic effects (for the organization and society) should be duly considered in decision making on occupational health and safety. This paper discusses the use of cost-benefit analysis related to Occupational Health and Safety. An exploratory qualitative study is proposed, considering the application of the Delphi methodology.


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