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Article

Productivity Burden of Occupational Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in Australia: A Life Table Modelling Study

1
School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria 3000, Australia
2
School of Public Health, Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia 6102, Australia
3
School of Population and Global Health, The University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia 6009, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(13), 4667; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134667
Received: 12 May 2020 / Revised: 25 June 2020 / Accepted: 25 June 2020 / Published: 29 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Global Burden of Noise Exposure)
Background: Occupational noise-induced hearing loss (ONIHL) is one of the most common yet preventable occupational diseases. The aim of this study was to estimate the economic burden of ONIHL in the Australian working population by quantifying and monetising ONIHL—related loss of Quality Adjusted Life Years (QALY) and Productivity Adjusted Life Years (PALYs). Methods: We simulated the number of moderate-to-severe ONIHL by multiplying the age-specific prevalence of occupational noise exposure by the excess risks of ONIHL. Life table modelling was applied to workers with ONIHL. The QALY and PALY weights attributable to hearing loss were sourced from published data. The 2016 Gross Domestic Product per full-time equivalent worker in Australia was used to estimate the cost of productivity loss due to ONIHL. The cost due to the loss of well-being was quantified using willingness to pay thresholds derived from an Australian longitudinal study. Results: Under current occupational noise exposure levels in Australia, we estimated that over 80,000 male workers and over 31,000 female workers would develop ONIHL over 10 years of exposure. Following this cohort until the age of 65 years, the estimated loss of QALYs and PALYs were 62,218 and 135,561 respectively, with a projected loss of AUD 5.5 billion and AUD 21.3 billion due to well-being and productivity loss, respectively. Reducing noise exposure at work would substantially reduce the economic burden of ONIHL. Conclusion: ONIHL imposes substantial burden on Australian economy. Interventions to reduce occupational noise exposure are warranted. View Full-Text
Keywords: occupational noise exposure; hearing loss; economic evaluation; Australia occupational noise exposure; hearing loss; economic evaluation; Australia
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MDPI and ACS Style

Si, S.; Lewkowski, K.; Fritschi, L.; Heyworth, J.; Liew, D.; Li, I. Productivity Burden of Occupational Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in Australia: A Life Table Modelling Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 4667. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134667

AMA Style

Si S, Lewkowski K, Fritschi L, Heyworth J, Liew D, Li I. Productivity Burden of Occupational Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in Australia: A Life Table Modelling Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(13):4667. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134667

Chicago/Turabian Style

Si, Si, Kate Lewkowski, Lin Fritschi, Jane Heyworth, Danny Liew, and Ian Li. 2020. "Productivity Burden of Occupational Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in Australia: A Life Table Modelling Study" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 13: 4667. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134667

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