Work health assessment
Staff must complete a health assessment with the College OHS if their job:
- Has defined medical fitness standards
- Requires health surveillance or vaccination as a protective measure
- Poses a significant risk of harm in the event of sudden illness or incapacity (‘safety-critical work’)
- Will involve contact with patients in a clinical setting
Jobs for which a health assessment is required include those that involve:
- Contact with patients or young children
- Contact with laboratory animals or insects, or other work requiring periodic health surveillance
- Handling of hazardous chemicals
- Operating workshop machinery
- Handling of human pathogens or genetically modified micro-organisms
- Regular driving (excluding commuting)
- Other work where sudden illness or accident may pose a significant risk of harm e.g. work at height
- Overseas travel
- Work requiring accurate colour vision
- Food handling
Most staff are passed fit on the basis of their questionnaire alone. The College OH Service at South Kensington is responsible for virtually all Employment Health Assessments of staff (from 03/08/2009). The Director of Occupational Health has overall responsibility for OH Services. Additional information is provided in the New Contract Request Health Assessment Evaluation of Post Guidance.
If you have any questions regarding an employment health assessment or would like further clarification on the questionnaire please contact us on 020 7594 9401 or via email.
Form of assessment
Staff are initially screened using questionnaires relevant to the specific work requiring screening. In a few instances the person may need to fill in two questionnaires e.g. clinicians also undertaking laboratory-based research work.
Some staff will need to attend the College OH Clinic at South Kensington after commencing employment to complete their assessment. This is usually required for jobs that involve:
- Work with patients or young children
- Work with laboratory animals
- Work for which vaccination is recommended as a control measure
- Food handlers
- Security staff
- Travel to tropical countries
- Any other job that requires a clinical assessment or test to determine fitness
For some staff screening and or clinic attendance will be deferred until the person is due to start the specific activity for which screening is required.
- The need for screening should be identified at the New Contract Request stage, by the recruiting manager completing the job hazard evaluation section of the New Contract Request form. This is equivalent to the Section 1 of the old Staff Employment Health Assessment form.
- If a health assessment is required for the post, the HR Administrator will pass on information to the OH Service when the new member of staff’s Personnel Record is created on ICIS.
- Once notified of a new member of staff requiring health clearance the OH Service will send the person the relevant questionnaires and information on how to complete their health assessment. For some work, e.g. work with laboratory animals, work with pathogens or travelling overseas, health assessment will be deferred until the person is due to commence the specific activity as details of the work pertinent to health assessment may be unknown at commencement.
- If attendance at OH clinic is necessary to complete an assessment, the person will be instructed to contact the OH Clinic at South Kensington to arrange an appointment once they start work at College.
- Line Managers should ensure that new staff have completed health clearance before commencing work for which this is required under College Health and Safety policies.
The outcome of assessments carried out at the beginning of employment is notified to Human Resources. Clearance for work with laboratory animals, Biological Agents or for overseas travel is notified directly to the person and to their line manager.
Recommendations to accommodate a health problem or disability
Where a person has a health problem that may limit their fitness for specific tasks, or require some adjustment to duties or specific support measure to protect their health, or which may significantly affect attendance the OH Adviser will advise the person’s line manager of this.
Recommendations on measures to accommodate a health problem or disability should be implemented whenever it is reasonably practical to do so.
All information on health provided by a member of staff to the College OH Service is held in medical confidence.
Recommendations on necessary adjustments will include information on the effects of a health problem or disability without disclosure of the underlying medical condition. The information provided should be treated as sensitive and disclosed to others only if necessary for them to assist in the effective implementation of adjustments.