OHSAS 18001 (BS OHSAS 18001:2007) is an international applied British standard. It is an accreditation given to organisations when they demonstrate a sound level of occupational health and safety performance within their business. Organisations recognise the OHSAS accreditation as being the standard indicator for occupational health and safety management systems worldwide. OHSAS, when it was formed, consisted of representatives from various sectors, including academic, specialist consultancies, certification bodies, health and safety institutions and the UK national standards body, the BSI Group (British Standards Institution). The 18001 accreditation provides requirements for the management system and the 18002 for its implementation. 18002 includes information for establishing, improving or implementing an 18001 system already in place.
OHSAS helps minimise risk to employees, it demonstrates assurance and diligence within an organisation, reduces the potential for accidents, aids legal compliance and helps promote a good occupational health and safety culture. It provides a framework for minimising health and safety risks, the implementation of risk assessments, staff training, communications systems and emergency systems.
As of 2005, more than 80 countries worldwide have been using 18001. It applies to all types of organisations. OHSAS has been developed to be compatible with ISO 9001 (Quality) and ISO 14001 (Environmental) management systems standards.