The publication of ISO 45001 is due in March 2018, after positive votes by the ISO member National Standard Bodies (NSBs). This much anticipated standard has been approved for publication as a Draft International Standard with the aim to set a framework for implementing a strong occupational health and safety management system.
ISO 45001 emphasizes the need for worker participation in the functioning of an OH&S management system, as well as requiring that an organization ensures that its workers are competent to do their assigned tasks safely.
ISO 45001 is based on the common elements found in all of ISO’s management system standards, assuring a high level of compatibility with the new versions of ISO 9001, Quality management systems, and ISO 14001, Environmental management systems.
It uses a simple Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) model, which provides a framework for organizations to plan what they need to put in place in order to minimize the risk of harm. The measures should address concerns that can lead to long-term health issues and absence from work, as well as those that give rise to accidents.
ISO has created the following infographic to illustrate in a funny way the many benefits that the new standard has
ISO 45001 ..
- aims to enable an organization toproactively improve its OH&S performance in preventing injury and ill-health.
- is intended to be applicable to any organization regardless of its size, type and nature
- enables an organization, through its OH&S management system, to integrate other aspects of health and safety, such as worker wellness/wellbeing
An ISO 45001 based OH&S management system will enable an organization to improve its OH&S performance by:
- developing and implementing an OH&S policy and OH&S objectives
- establishing systematic processes which consider its “context” and which take into account its risks and opportunities, and its legal and other requirements
- determining the hazards and OH&S risks associated with its activities; seeking to eliminate them, or putting in controls to minimize their potential effects
- establishing operational controls to manage its OH&S risks and its legal and other requirements
- increasing awareness of its OH&S risks
- evaluating its OH&S performance and seeking to improve it, through taking appropriate actions
- ensuring workers take an active role in OH&S matters
In combination these measures will ensure that an organization’s reputation as a safe place to work will be promoted, and can have more direct benefits, such as:
- improving its ability to respond to regulatory compliance issues
- reducing the overall costs of incidents
- reducing downtime and the costs of disruption to operations
- reducing the cost of insurance premiums
- reducing absenteeism and employee turnover rates
- recognition for having achieved an international benchmark (which may in turn influence customers who are concerned about their social responsibilities)
The standard refers to ALL organizations: ”not matter if your organization is a micro business, or a global conglomerate ; if it is a non-profit organization, a charity, an academic institution, or a government department. As long as your organization has people working on its behalf, or who may be affected by its activities, then using a systematic approach to managing health and safety will bring benefits to it” ISO explains.
2.34 million deaths were reported in 2013 as a result of work activities, according to ILO. The greatest majority (2 million) are associated with health issues, as opposed to injuries.
660,000 deaths a year are estimated as a result of cancers arising from work activities, by the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)
An OH&S management system is vital for an organization as it can prevent incidents into a systematic and ongoing set of processes (supported by the use of appropriate methods and tools) and can reinforce the organization’s commitment to proactively improving its OH&S performance.