Economic evaluation of a participatory ergonomics intervention in a textile plant
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In this study we report on the economic evaluation of a participatory ergonomics process undertaken at a clothing manufacturer in Southwestern Ontario, Canada that employs approximately 300 workers. We undertake a cost-benefit analysis from the company perspective. Intervention costs amounted to $65,787 and intervention benefits $360,614 (2011 Canadian dollars). The net present value was $294,827, suggesting that the intervention was worth undertaking based on the costs and consequences over the measurement period spanning more than four years. Based on these costs and benefits, the benefit-to-cost ratio is 5.5. Overall, the findings from this study suggest that participatory ergonomics interventions can be cost beneficial from the company perspective. Even though the changes were typically low-cost and low-tech interventions implemented by the plant mechanics and maintenance personnel, benefits were realized on both the health and financial fronts.
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