ISO 45001 The leading international standard for occupational health and safety


When it comes to human life and health, there must be great care in this regard, for what value is more important than human life! The Almighty said: “and whoever saves a life, it will be as if they saved all of humanity” (Al-Ma’idah 32).

According to the statistics of the International Labor Organization; There are 7,600 deaths per day due to work-related injuries or diseases resulting from work conditions, ie, two million and 780,000 people lose their lives every year as a result of work-related injuries, and it is believed that the number is much higher, As some countries neither document the actual causes of death, nor accurately publish statistics about it.

Impacts of occupational injuries and diseases are great, both on theemployers and on the Macroeconomic, as they lead to many losses resulting from early retirement, absence of employees and high insurance premiums. To combat these problems, the International Organization for Standardization ISO has developed a new standardto manage the requirements of the Occupational health and safety systems (ISO 45001) which will help organizations reduce the impacts by providing a framework for improving employee safety, reducing hazards and creating better and safer working conditions around the world.

The importance of standards in our lives lies in facilitating trade between countries and in enhancing the quality of life in general.

The number of ISO specifications approaches 38,000, specifications issued by specialized bodies such as the International Telecommunication Union and the British Standards Institution BSI, and the field of occupational health and safety is one of the most important areas that concern all the standards, especially the strictly regulated fields such as aviation, automobile industry, factories and oil and gas fields.

The first international standard for occupational health and safety management systems, ISO 45001, was issued on March 12, 2018, which replaced the previous standard (OHSAS 18001). ISO45001was developed by a committee of occupational health and safety experts, and it follows a framework similar to the other management systems. Such as the Environmental Management System (ISO 14001) and the Quality Management System (ISO 9001). And other international standards specialized in this field, such as (OHSAS 18001), ILO standards, conventions, and various national standards. This standard is applicable for all institutions of all sizes, and since the institution has previously obtained a certificate (OHSAS 18001), it was necessary to these institutions to upgrade their existing internal systems to comply the requirements of the new international standard (ISO 45001).

The objective of issuing this standard (ISO 45001) is to implement occupational health and safety management systems in organizations, which will help them protect important employees and assets by:

Unifying global systems for occupational health and safety for all institutions of all sizes and nature of business.
Compliance with legislation and laws and reduce work losses.
Assist organizations in applying systems that reduce occupational injuries and diseases, proactively prevent risks, and stimulate innovation and continuous improvement.
Provide a safe and healthy work environment for employees and others with whom they are dealing.
Reducing work-related injuries and fatalities.
Contribute to improving quality and raise awareness of occupational health and safety.
Simplify the template for preparing the Action Plan (Plan, Do, check, act / PDCA), which provides a framework for organizations to plan what they need to reduce the risk of harm and try to remedy it and put in an appropriate place measure.
Design standards requirements in this context and which is aligned with the other updated specifications such as ISO (9001:2015) facilitates the implementation of an integrated management system, where the application and auditing processes for more than one specification are integrated at the same time.

In the end, the actual and effective implementation of the requirements of the standard is the most important success factor,not its texts, as the application of safety in general is a matter of commitment of the top management; as well as raising awareness and establishing a culture that includes all organizational units and human resources, and not just preparing files in order to obtain Certification only, safety is a way of life.

khalid Al TatanchiISO 45001 The leading international standard for occupational health and safety


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  • Urban Reform

    Urban Reform - September 3, 2021

    the implementation of the ISO 45001 must has all the support it needs, including resources, competence, awareness, communication, and documentation.
    Thank you Engr.Khalid for sharing this helpful brief.

  • Ihsan Hassan

    Engr.Ihsan Hassan - September 13, 2021

    Very serious and important issue for all the organizations, as ISO 45001 provides a framework to increase safety,
    reduce workplace risks and enhance health and well-being at work, enabling an organization to proactively improve its OH&S performance.

    Thank you Eng. Khalid for raising this report.

    Besides the high rate of annual deaths, and as per the ILO annual reports there are around 374 million non-fatal injuries and illnesses as a result of occupational accidents. Aside from the enormous impact on families and communities, the cost to business and economies is significant.

    In this occasion would like to add two points:-

    Firstly – Highlight that effective October 1, 2021, bidders must be certified with the Certificate of Recognition safety program on any construction tender issued by York Region, Ontario, Canada construction projects. York Region will accept ISO 45001 certification as a substitute if the vendor provides a Letter of Certificate of Recognition equivalency issued by the Infrastructure Health and Safety Association or a valid Letter of Reciprocity issued by the IHSA. Contractors who have not yet achieved Certificate of Recognition, but wish to bid on future Regional construction tenders issued on or after October 1, 2021, must obtain full certification or ISO 45001 Certificate of Recognition reciprocity or equivalency prior to bidding.

    Secondly – Raise and answer the below two essential frequently asked questions.

    Q. ONE – How do to get started the implementation of ISO 45001? Here are a few tips to get started:
    1. Perform an analysis of the organization context that is relevant to OH&S (such as interested parties) as well as the internal and external factors that might impact the business.
    2. Establish the scope of the system, considering what would like the management system to achieve.
    3. Set the OH&S policy and objectives.
    4. Define the time frame to implement the system and plan how to achieve it.
    5. Determine any competence and/or resource gaps that need addressing before implementing the standard.

    Q.TWO – Can I integrate ISO 45001 into my existing management system?

    ISO 45001 shares a high-level structure (HLS), identical core text and terms and definitions with other recently revised ISO management system standards such as ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015.
    This framework is designed to facilitate the integration of new management topics into an organization’s established management systems. In addition, ISO 45001 was designed to follow ISO 14001 fairly closely, as it is recognized that many organizations combine their OH&S and environmental management functions internally.
    This will simplify the integration of ISO 45001, particularly for those who are familiar with ISO 14001.

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