Estimating the costs of occupational injury in the United States

Accid Anal Prev. 1995 Dec;27(6):741-7. doi: 10.1016/0001-4575(95)00022-4.


This article estimates workplace injury costs in the U.S. These costs have been studied in less detail than most injury costs. Our methods, which mostly use regularly published data, produce order-of-magnitude estimates. Overall, workplace injuries cost the U.S. an estimated $140 billion annually. This estimate includes $17 billion in medical and emergency services, $60 billion in lost productivity, $5 billion in insurance costs, and $62 billion in lost quality of life. One sixth of the societal costs result from the 3% of workplace injuries in motor vehicle crashes. Motor vehicle costs per injury are almost 6 times the workplace injury average.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism
  • Accidents, Occupational / economics*
  • Accidents, Occupational / prevention & control
  • Accidents, Traffic / economics
  • Costs and Cost Analysis
  • Humans
  • United States
  • Value of Life
  • Workers' Compensation / economics
  • Wounds and Injuries / economics*
  • Wounds and Injuries / prevention & control