What Value is Placed on One Human Life?

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  • Written By: Rachel Catherine Allen
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 28 May 2020
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The United States Environmental Protection Agency has determined that the value of a human life is more than $9 million US Dollars (USD). Along similar lines, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has valued the human life at about $8 million USD, and the U.S. Department of Transportation set its bar lower at about $6 million USD.

More facts about the value of a life:

  • "Value of life" estimations are commonly made in statistics, and there are a number of criteria used. For instance, when coming up with the value of a "Consumer Unit" (CU) — i.e., a person's value — statisticians consider everything from age to family income to the ways in which people are educated.

  • Globally, insurance companies have their own value of life standards as well. Generally, when considering whether to cover a new treatment, they decide based on whether the treatment will provide one year of "quality life" per $50,000 USD or less. This is disturbing to some economists who have calculated that to have a year of a "quality life" you need at least $129,000 USD.

  • To put these values in perspective, the average trafficked human costs about $90 USD.

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