This report was commissioned by WorkCover NSW: to estimate the lifetime cost in NSW of work-related injuries and illnesses that occurred in 2000-2001; and to develop a database resource that would enable WorkCover to evaluate the economic impacts of occupational health and safety interventions.
The study adopted a life cycle approach to costing in which incidents were valued over the lifetime of the injury. Only compensated cases that occurred and were registered in the base year were included and the cost framework was restricted to NSW, so welfare and tax effects were not considered in the study.
Specifically, the objectives of the project were to:
1. Develop a resource based on TOOCS classification of work-related injury and disease;
2. Identify the average cost of work-related injury and illness, corresponding with each ARDRG classification
3. Estimate the associated lifetime costs in NSW
4. The lifetime costs to be included were:
- Medical costs (acute hospital, general practice, ancillary and allied health services),
- administrative costs,
- production disturbance costs,
- human capital (loss of output) costs, and
- other costs of morbidity (loss of quality of life) and mortality.
5. Identify which groups bore the burden of these costs, that is, the distribution of the costs between workers, employers and society (through the workers compensation and government sectors)
6. Determine the cost of particular injuries and illnesses according to industry, occupation and basic demographic information