Specialist Medical Advice
Employee ill health represents a significant cost to industry and to the individuals who are affected. Larger companies and their insurers recognise the value of expert occupational health advice and many retain the services of an occupational physician. Other companies can still have access to expert advice when they need it, using mobile communications and e-mail.
Independent Medical Reports
When employees are suffering from illness or disability that affects their ability to work, or they feel their health has been affected by their work, it may be necessary to get some occupational health specialist medical advice.
Sometimes it is difficult to make sense of differing opinions from the employee, sick notes, GP reports and other sources. We can arrange for a consultant in occupational medicine to see and examine your employee, correspond with their doctor and produce a comprehensive medical report concerning their employability and any special arrangements that are necessary at work.
Consultations can take place at our consulting rooms. Many employers find that, compared to the cost of extended sickness absence, this approach is very cost effective. An occupational medical report can provide the following information:
- Define the relationship between an underlying medical condition and work.
- Indicate the outlook for a return to work and the likelihood of further absence.
- The impact of the individual's condition on the health or safety of others.
- Any restrictions to the employee's duties or hours and the duration of the restrictions.
- Find out whether a person might be considered disabled under the Equality Act.
- Any need for reasonable adjustments or resettlement into a different job.
As the costs of occupational illness become increasingly apparent employers are seeing a significant growth in regulatory control and civil litigation. But what does the law mean in practice, in a real workplace with real people and real health risks?
Occupational health physicians use their knowledge of occupational medicine and work to find realistic solutions that ensure the protection of health as well as regulatory compliance. Review your policies on health and safety, sickness absence, drugs and alcohol, "stress" and so on. This is medical, not legal, advice and forms an important part of any loss control strategy.
- Targeted, risk based, compliance with health and safety law -- e.g. COSHH, Noise at Work Regulations, Management Regulations.
- Identification and protection of people with disabilities under the Equality Act.
- Improved understanding of medical and employment reports in civil litigation cases.
- Fully attributable expert medical advice -- in writing.
Occupational Health Assessments
A occupational health assessment is an evaluation of the health of an individual in relation to their ability to carry out their job.
Reasons for Occupational Health Assessments
- Ensure that people are fit to do the job for which they are employed.
- Demonstrate that workplace health controls are adequate.
- Detect adverse health effects.
- Identify work-related disease.
- Assess the fitness of individuals to perform their work effectively and safely.
- Check that work is not harming health.
- Comply with the legal requirements for health surveillance.
- Guard against claims for illness that is not your fault.
Sickness Absence, Disability and Rehabilitation
Frequent, short, unconnected spells of absence may not be due to significant illness and therefore require a management approach. Medical advice is needed in order to ensure that management action is proportionate and fair. We can help you to interpret your sickness absence data, make sense of the stated reasons for absence and devise strategies for improving attendance.
Long term sickness that extends beyond four weeks is often due to more serious medical conditions that need to be assessed in order to ensure an appropriate return to work and rehabilitation arrangements.
With a detailed knowledge of different occupations, working environments and management cultures we can work with your people to resolve difficult cases and achieve a satisfactory outcome. We can provide independent medical reports and liaise with other healthcare professionals while respecting medical confidentiality.
- Identify individuals or departments with poor sickness absence history.
- Look for trends and patterns.
- Identify problems in the workforce and possible work related causes.
- Compare figures with industry averages.
- Improve quality of data input and calculate costs. Consider medical or management interventions to reduce losses.
Ill Health Retirement
Eligibility for ill health retirement benefits depends on criteria that are legally binding and interpreted by the pension trustees. A medical report is normally required and can be provided by our consultant occupational health physician, following a consultation and examination where necessary.