OHSAS 18001 is one of the most popular international standards published by BSI. First published an international collaboration called as “Occupational Health and Safety Advisory Services” (OHSAS) in 1999, BSI adopted it as a British standard in 2007 as its first edition and called it BS Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Services (OHSAS) 18001. In 2013, ISO declared that it would adopt the standard as ISO 45001 which is scheduled to be published in 2016.
BS OHSAS 18001 prescribes the criteria for an occupational health and safety management system (OHSMS) that an organization may want to build. Any type of an organization can refer to these criteria and develop its own occupational health and safety management system. Once all applicable criteria are addressed, the organization can get this occupational health and safety management system certified from a third party certification body.
Most organizations develop an occupational health and safety management system because –
BS OHSAS 18001 helps the organizations build efficient operational controls in view of the hazards and risks to health and safety that arise due to its routine and non-routine activities. Such controls also satisfy the applicable statutory and regulatory requirements (e.g. Labour Laws) thereby ensuring the required compliance level.
The benefits that an organization may get out of the application of BS OHSAS 18001 and its certification are mostly based on the management’s intentions of selecting this standard. However, following examples provide some direction about what the BS OHSAS 18001 can give the organizations in terms of its benefits –
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