Project "Development of a model for calculation of the costs of occupational accidents in Estonia"

Calculation model for the national and society level

In order to work out the model a work group was set up.  During the course of seminars/workshops the working group:

1)   familiarised with the calculation models of occupational accidents and diseases  on national and society level prepared by different countries and decided to use the Danish model as a basis for working out the calculation models for Estonia;

2)   specified components for the Estonian calculation model on costs of occupational accidents;

3)   clarified authorities who could provide the work group with necessary data.

          Labour Inspectorate:

                - No of people injured in occupational accidents;

                - No of fatal occupational accidents;

                - How much it costs to investigate an occupational accident.

          Estonian Health Insurance Fund:  

                - Average No of days of disability for persons injured at an occupational accident;  

                - Average cost for a rehabilitation programme;

                - Average in-patient cost per patient;

                - Average outpatient cost per patient;  

                - Average cost of prescriptions at reduced prices;

                - Cost of ambulance;   

                - Size of death benefit.

          Social Insurance Board:

                - Average compensation per injured person a month;

                - No of early retired persons due to occupational accidents by age groups  and the amount of an average pension;

                - Average survivor`s  pension per family member.

           Statistical Office of Estonia:

                - Life expectancy by gender and age groups;

                - Gross domestic product (GNP) in current prices;  

                - Average net salary per day.

            The work group and the Ministry of Social Affairs:  

                - Average opinion of administrative costs of  an occupational accident at state enterprises / insurance companies.  

Statistical data of 2002 was used to work out the model. As the aim of the work of the work group was to prepare a user-friendly model, easily adjustable, 5-years average data was used to avoid fluctuation of statistical data that takes place every year (eg.average number of days lost per occupational accident is according to the Health Insurance Fund 43).

All components of the model are connected with the number of occupational accidents and average consumption rates. 

The components of the model can be divided into six groups:

 When we speak about costs of occupational accidents we have to deal all the components separately on two levels: National level and Society level.

For calculation of the costs of permanent disability and death (pension and the loss of GNP for the state) the table, prepared by the Statistical Office, concerning the anticipated span of life where the age of the injured person is taken into account is used.

The conclusion of costs shows that occupational accidents of one year for the Republic of Estonia approximately cost 50 million EEK (0,14 % of the state budget). Comparing the sum of sickness compensations with the sum paid in other European countries we can say that the national part (80 %) is unjustifiably large in Estonia.

Occupational accidents of one year cost for the society approximately 540 million EEK (0,5% of the GNP), first of all because of loss of produce for the society due to sickness of workers. It is calculated using the table of anticipated span of life of people with early retirement and cases of death.

Health care and administrative costs are both national and society costs because these are the costs that could have been used more efficiently by the society.

As for society costs we must take into account the costs of material damages due to occupational accidents on enterprise level.

Some figures that characterize occupational accidents in 2002 in Estonia:

      - total costs of accidents

      - costs of an accident

      - distribution by cost component

      - distribution by age

      - distribution of costs of an accident resulting in early retirement by age groups

      - occupational accidents and days of sickness


The members of the work group expect that after working out the model and explaining it to the social partners it will have an effect on the working environment policy in Estonia, inform the society of the necessity  to take measures to prevent occupational accidents.