Health surveillance is the process of monitoring the health of your employees who may be exposed to specific health risks during the course of their work.
Where appropriate, employers need to provide health surveillance to demonstrate they are meeting their duty of care for their employees. The purpose of health surveillance should be clearly explained to employees.
Health surveillance might involve examination by a doctor or trained nurse. In some cases trained people (the ‘responsible person’) could, for example, check employees’ skin for dermatitis, or ask questions about breathing difficulties where work involves substances known to cause asthma.
It is important that the purpose of health surveillance should be covered in the company Occupational Health Policy arrangements, making reference to the people considered to be at risk, and the form of health surveillance to be done.
It should also clearly identify how results will be fed back to employees and managers and describe how results will be handled. Finally, it is essential that the policy describes the actions in the event of an employee being diagnosed with the relevant work related illness.
Information provided by HSE