What is “Health Surveillance”?
Health Surveillance, otherwise known as “on going monitoring and assessment”, is defined by the Health and Safety Executive (1999d) (HSE) as a process of “systematic, regular and appropriate procedures to detect signs of work related ill health among employees exposed to health risks and acting on the results”. The HSE also recommended any findings are based on both the assessment and:
- where work is known to impact on health
- where there are ways of detecting disease for health effects
- where it is possible that damage or harm can occur under working conditions
- where health surveillance is of benefit to the employee
The most common hazards include:-
- Solvents, dust, and other chemicals
- Working in a confined space / at height
- Night working
- Working with machinery and equipment
What determines the need for Health Surveillance?
Legislation tends to guide the need for a regular health surveillance programme. For example, health surveillance may be required under the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations (1999), The Noise at Work Regulations (2005), the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (1994, amended 1999), The Working Time Regulations (2003) or more specifically certain substances such as lead, where an assessment by a HSE appointed Doctor is required.
How can Workplace Health & Wellbeing help?
Following your own organisations risk assessment process and through liaison with your Health and Safety representative, we can help you to plan a health surveillance programme necessary for the risks found in your working environment. Once planned, the majority of health surveillance programme’s are completed on-site to enable minimal disruption to your organisation.
Following each assessment we provide organisations with documentary record of the employee’s fitness to work. The ‘fitness certificate’ will indicate any action required by either the employer or employee and this also provides evidence that an appropriate health surveillance programme is in place. However, clinical details remain confidential between the individual and us.
If you would like to discuss further information about our health surveillance services, please contact the Business Manager on 01603 286667