Cost of Workplace Injuries: All You Need to Know

Cost of Workplace Injuries

Cost of Workplace Injuries: All You Need to Know

When thinking about the cost of workplace injuries, most people only take into consideration direct financial implications like the worker’s compensation claim and the insurance agency costs. These have a significant impact, but they are not the only expenses a company will face when an accident happens. In this article we are going to guide you through this extremely important topic by showing statistics, types of indirect costs, and what steps you can take to prevent injuries.

Workplace injuries statistics

Health & Safety Executive (HSE) analysed how much work-related injuries cost to Great Britain in 2018/19. Their statistics show that over a million workers are injured each year and that it has an impact not only on the company, but also on individuals, their families, the country, and society as a whole. The impact was measured in terms of human costs – taking into account to the impact on the quality of life, financial costs, healthcare costs and loss of production. According to the report, the average cost for a fatal injury is £1.7m while non-fatal injuries cost £8,800 – resulting in a total cost £5.6 billion.

Indirect cost of workplace injuries

Medical bills and workers’ compensation are the most immediate cost of a workplace injury, but the total cost is much higher than that as we must also consider long-term implications for both the company and individuals. For companies, indirect costs include legal fees, loss of productivity, recruitment, workers replacement and training, equipment losses, and – depending on the type of accident – reputational damage. 

However, according to HSE the majority of costs falls on individuals. First of all, workers can suffer from severe physical and psychological consequences. Secondly, the financial costs are extremely high as they include rehabilitation costs, reduction of quality of life, loss of earnings and expenses related to making a claim.

Prevent injuries

The most effective way to reduce the cost of workplace injuries is preventing injuries from happening. HSE has published a guide on risks control in the workplace. The first step is identifying all the potential hazards, thinking how employees can get harmed, and evaluating the risks – meaning you must decide how likely it is that harm will happen and what to do about it. Once you have carried out a risk assessment, you must implement the next Health & Safety procedures, which – as we have seen in our previous article – begin with knowledge and communication. Provide your employees with regular training on how to safely operate equipment, outline a Health & Safety policy and share it with them. It is vital to also inform employees on where first aid kits are located, and make sure that their PPE is always effective and worn adequately.

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