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What is the OHSAS 18001 Standard?

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The Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSAS) 18001 standard is a health and safety management standard that helps organizations create frameworks for officially managing occupational health and safety concerns in the workplace, as stated by the British Standards Institution (BSI). This safety standard helps managers and business owners create a safe working environment by identifying potential hazards and reducing the potential for work-related accidents and injuries among employees. Although this is technically a British standard, it is useful to businesses all around the world and is seen as a particularly effective health and safety management tool.

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First developed in 1999, the OHSAS 18001 standard is occasionally updated. For example, the BSI issued an official update to the standard in 2007.

In addition to providing a framework for management, the OHSAS 18001 standard also includes information about how to properly educate employees on looking out for health and safety concerns in the workplace. This protocol is useful across a variety of industries, notes ACS Registrars. Although health and safety are a central focus of OHSAS 18001, there is an added benefit of increased productivity and efficiency among organizations that adopt the standard. This is due in part to the fact that sick or hurt employees can create productivity problems and cause other financial strain.

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