A systematic review of OHS interventions with economic evaluations

Before employers invest in workplace health and safety interventions, they want to know the financial implications of their investment. The goal of this review was to explore whether such interventions are worthwhile from an economic point of view. To find an answer, the Institute for Work & Health conducted a systematic review of studies of workplace-based health and safety interventions that also had an economic analysis.

An economic evaluation is a study in which a researcher or decision-maker assesses the costs and consequences of a particular intervention and its relevant alternatives. In general, most studies of occupational health and safety (OHS) programs do not undertake an economic evaluation.

This review sought to answer the following question: What is the credible evidence that incremental investment in health and safety is worth undertaking?

´╗┐This review is unique in that it is the first to examine this topic in a systematic and comprehensive fashion. It begins to fill the current gap in the research on the financial merits of OHS programs. It also provides insight into which sectors and types of interventions need to include economic evaluations in future studies.

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Summary: Is it worthwhile investing in health and safety programs? (219 KB)

Full report: 

PDF icon Volume 1 (251.83 KB)
PDF icon Volume 2 (251.83 KB)


Tompa E, Dolinschi R, de Oliveira C, Irvin E