Year's worth of workplace accidents, diseases cost Singapore $10.45 billion: Study

A year's worth of workplace accidents and diseases cost firms, workers and the Government a whopping $10.45 billion, according to a study by the Workplace Safety and Health Institute.

Based on 2011 statistics, the study found that the cost of workplace accidents and diseases that year was $2.62 billion. This rose to $10.45 billion when including lifetime costs, such as the loss of injured workers' future earnings and firms' loss of human capital. Of this, some $2.3 billion were costs borne by employers.

Minister of State for Manpower and Health Amy Khor said: "I hope this study goes some way in convincing businesses that they need to improve safety and health outcomes for Singapore and our workers." She was speaking at the annual WSH Awards at Marina Bay Sands on Tuesday night.

At the event, Dr Khor also announced that the Manpower Ministry is tightening laws on reporting of workplace accidents. Now, accidents resulting in medical leave of more than three consecutive days must be reported. The MOM will change this so that accidents must be reported if they result in three days of medical leave, even if not consecutive. This is expected to take effect early next year.