You need to perform medical surveillance in your company.
But before you perform medical surveillance, you need to establish if your worker is exposed to risk.
By identifying the exposed risks, biological agents and chemical hazards you can determine what medical surveillance is necessary so you can verify your company's particular requirements if you employ a consultant, says the Health&Safety Advisor.
Here are the four steps you should follow to establish if a worker is exposed to hazards
Step #1: Identify hazards that arise from the environment
Let's say Jack is the risk control officer of a new construction company.
The CEO instructs him to get the company compliant with occupational health and safety regulations.
He starts by consulting the OHSA to develop a health and safety plan and then walks around the plant to assess the risks that arise in the workplace.
Jack should ask these five questions to help determine what medical surveillance is necessary in the company or manufacturing plant
Are the risks:
Step #2: Assess the time of exposure (how long are employees exposed to hazards?
Ask the questions:
This'll indicate when you must do biological monitoring.
For example: Jack discovers that many of his workers include builders, drivers, crane operators, reach truck, and operators of specialised equipment. These employees are exposed to heavy loads, uncomfortable positions, dust, fumes, heat, glare, noise for eight hours a day, 40 hours a week.
Test yourself here to see if you can as accurately as possible think of what medical surveillance you need to do in this situation:
Generally, the answer would be that these employees would need:
Step #3: From the above information deduce what medical surveillance tests you need to conduct
Using Jack as a case study, please note that: As Jack's company doesn't have an on-site medical service, Jack consults a reputable occupational health mobile medical company to do the medical surveillance for his employees.
He explains that his company is new and many of the employees are exposed to things such as dust and fumes.
He has to provide relevant information to receive the correct necessary medical surveillance.
Jack achieves this by providing a list of his employees with relevant occupations and a breakdown of job categories with special needs (for example, drivers).
In discussion with the occupational health practitioner he decides that:
Step #4: If you decide to use the services of an external service provider, you'll get a quote and if you accept you'll sign a contract for services rendered
For example, Jack decides on a date for the medical surveillance onsite and discusses and agrees on the special requirements of the medical service:
To ensure smooth running of the service, he must make a co-ordinator available on the set date to ensure staff arrive timeously and to inform and prepare employees.
He may also need to request the help of an interpreter to assist with filling in forms.
It's that simple. Using these four steps will help ensure you correctly determine if your employee is exposed to risk and the level of medical surveillance is necessary.
Turn to chapter M04 of your Health and Safety Advisor to get template questionnaire to assist you with the specific type of medical surveillance you require at your workplace.
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