Occupational Health Assessments

Occupational health assessments OccuMed can arrange an Occupational Health assessment or examination with a subsequent management report for your employees throughout the UAE. We have OH Advisors & Doctors located in all the major towns & cities who we can call upon at short notice to conduct an Occupational Health Assessment or Medical for you. We are happy to arrange a single referral for a member of staff or to set-up a larger medical referral programme. We can also arrange for the Occupational Health referral to be carried out at work, at the employee's home or at the Occupational Health Doctor's premises.

So whether you require one or more referrals, a workplace Occupational Health Assessment, a home visit or wish to send an employee to see an Occupational Health Physician we are in a position to help you.

The Occupational Health Assessment process is essentially very simple:
  • You complete a referral form (employee details, why, what… type questions).
  • We (OccuMed & you) discuss and agree the most appropriate review process.
  • The Occupational Health Assessment is arranged and takes place.
  • A few days later, we issue an appropriate Occupational Health report.

We are happy to arrange for these Occupational Health reports as either part of a larger contract or simply as a one-off arrangement. So please do contact us to discuss your requirements on

What is an Occupational Health Assessment?

An Occupational Health Assessment is a medical examination performed by an Occupational Health Physician with an aim of addressing questions raised by the employer. Its primary aim is to advise management regarding the employee's health issue and to make recommendations on what adjustments could be considered to ensure a safe/healthy working environment for that employee. It can also be an assessment of somebody's fitness to work.

Each Occupational Health report will be tailored to the employee and situation but it can include advice on the medical condition itself, symptoms, prognosis, likelihood of recovery, what adjustments could be considered, and similar. The aim of the report is to inform Management and give them an expert medical opinion and sufficient information to enable them to make any onward decisions with appropriate knowledge.

An occupational Health assessment is NOT normally intended for diagnosis or treatment purposes though in some cases the Doctor could make suggestions for the employee to discuss with their own medical practitioners.

When should it be organised?

There is no fixed best time to organise an Occupational Health Assessment. Each situation should be treated on its own merits.

An assessment can be organised at anytime including:
  • Employee still at work: An employee may be attending work regularly but could be showing signs of struggling and it may be the case that some timely changes are all that are required to keep them at work safely and productively.
  • Regular short-term absences: Somebody with regular short-term absences could benefit from an assessment to ensure there are no underlying more serious health issues.
  • Medium / Long term absences: Employees that have had substantial time away from work could be referred for an assessment.
  • Return to Work: It may be appropriate for employees ready to return to work following a period of absence to be assessed so they can be integrated back in a safe and structured manner.

A single one–off assessment is normally sufficient for most employees but for more serious illnesses then it may be appropriate to keep the employee under regular review.

Note:The above applies to Occupational Health Assessments carried out by a Doctor and also applies to those conducted by an Occupational Health nurse advisor.

Please click the following for more information regarding
  • The Occupational Health Assessment Process
  • Employee Consent to an Occupational Assessment
  • Occupational Health Assessment - Frequently Asked Questions

Or simply contact us

  • The Occupational Health Assessment Process
  • Employee Consent to an Occupational Assessment
  • Employee Consent required for OH Assessment
  • Consent required for Occupational Health Referral

When sending an employee for an Occupational Health Assessment or Independent Medical Assessment part of the process is to get the employee's consent. There are 2 different consents that need to be gained from the employee. However should you or the Doctor look to seek an opinion or report from the employee's GP or other specialist at any stage then another consent form is required.

Consent to attend the Medical Assessment

This is the responsibility of the employer. Essentially the employer needs to get the agreement of the employee to attend an appointment. We would recommend that the employer talks through why they would like the member of staff to attend and what they hope to achieve by the referral. Larger employers tend to have their own consent form which they get their employees to sign to say they understand and are happy to attend. Should you not have such a consent form then OccuMed can easily supply one as part of the Occupational Health Referral Service.

Consent to release report

This is the responsibility of the Occupational Health Physician. As part of the assessment process the Doctor should explain that they are going to generate a report for sharing with the employee's Management and generally what that report will say. At this stage the Doctor will seek consent to release such a report. This 'informed' consent can take three forms:

  • Consent to just release the report without seeing it.
  • Consent to release report but to receive a copy at the same time.
  • Consent to release report but after only after a copy has been received giving an opportunity to suggest amendments.
Amendments to Occupational Health Report

Should an employee wish to amend a report before it is released then they have the right to suggest amendments regarding "facts" but not the Doctors opinion.

Consent to obtain GP report (or similar)

At any stage of an Occupational Health Referral either the employer or the Doctor may think getting a report direct from the employee's GP or other specialist will add value to the process. If this is the case then another distinct consent is required (consent to access medical records).

Withheld Consent

An employee can withhold their consent at any stage of the process and cannot be compelled to proceed. If this is the case then we would advise that the employer makes their best endeavour to persuade the employee to proceed. Failing this then the employee should be clearly informed that Management will have to proceed using only their current knowledge and without any expert medical opinion. This should be clearly documented.

Occupational Health Assessment - Frequently Asked Questions

Occupational Health Assessment – FAQs

occupational health faqsIs an OH Assessment independent?

The assessment is invariably paid for by the employer and is geared to offering the employer appropriate advice and addressing any specific Management concerns raised at the referral stage. However the Doctor will conduct the referral and produce a report in a totally neutral manner.

Is the report biased?

The Doctor will conduct the assessment and produce the report in a dispassionate and neutral manner. However the Doctor will probably not have the full background details of the issue and will have to rely upon the information provided beforehand, observations during the consultation/examination and what the subject tells them.

There can be two different views (those of employer and employee) of an issue and clearly the employee will talk through their perception of the issue in great detail and this invariably may mean the report does not necessarily correlate with employer's perception. It is therefore important at the initial referral stage for the employer to explain their concerns.

Does the Doctor have access to any medical records?

The Doctor only has access to what is available and provided at the referral stage or anything the subject may take along to the consultation.

Should the Doctor need access to medical records then they will have to follow a set procedure to gain access to them which includes getting written consent from the subject. Essentially it is the same procedure that, for example, HR may use to get a GP report. additional time and cost would be incurred.

Are Doctor's recommendations binding?

Recommendations are not binding and are simply recommendations. It is for the employer to assess whether the recommendations are practical and reasonable to implement for their organisation and circumstances. However the advice is given by an expert medical professional and an employer should give them serious consideration.


We think our employee is lying, will an assessment confirm this?

If an employee is lying especially about an illness with variable or no obvious outward symptoms then a 30-60 minute consultation will not, realistically, be the best option to confirm an issue or not. If you have any serious doubt then we would suggest you seek a report directly from the employees GP.


Will an assessment give us a diagnosis?

Many illnesses can take weeks or even months, a battery of tests and require specialist consultants to be officially diagnosed. An Occupational Health Assessment is simply not meant for this purpose; its primary aim is to educate and inform Management about the situation.


Does an Employee have to attend?

In short, an employee cannot be compelled to attend an OH assessment. It is therefore essential to fully explain to and engage your employee in why you wish to go down this route and what you want to achieve by doing so.


What can we do if an employee refuses to attend an OH Assessment?

We would recommend that you try your best to encourage your employee to attend. Thereafter you need to explain clearly that any Managements decisions you will be making will therefore have to be made without expert medical advice.

It would be advisable that this is all clearly documented.

Sickness and Work

Sickness Absence Management

sickness absence OccuMed Occupational Health can help you reduce the disruption, loss of productivity and general management time wasted dealing with sickness absence issues. We can help to facilitate the much faster return-to-work of your employees after a spell of sickness absence than otherwise would be the case if things were left to run their own course. The early intervention of one of our highly experience Occupational Health professionals, be it an Occupational Health Advisor or an Occupational Health Physician, can produce rapid results.

A sickness absence referral can lead in many directions such as:
  • Advice to employees on what they should be asking their own GP.
  • Helping engage other appropriate GP services.
  • Identification of real cause of the sickness absence so the route cause can be tackled (stress at work, a bad DSE set-up, manual handling issues, etc...)
  • Suggest onward private consultation to other health professionals such as a physiotherapist or counsellor.
  • Identify what reasonable adjustments can be made at work to allow the person to return in some capacity.
  • Co-ordinating the employee rehabilitation programme.
  • Devising and monitoring a return-to-work programme, phased return or similar. Any of these directions will help tackle the absence and get the employee back quickly and safely.

However, of course, there are often cases of serious illnesses that cannot be tackled quickly and for these cases a sickness absence review will:

  • Identify that this employee will not be returning in the medium term (or at all) or when they return they will need to be reassigned or some similar variation.
  • Give some idea on the timeframe for the particular case.
  • Give Management & HR some insight of the health issue and the prognosis.
  • Can identify those cases appropriate for ill-health retirement or similar.

With this knowledge you can then engage with the employee and offer support in an appropriate manner, plan ahead with some confidence and not be wondering what is going to happen every time a sick note is produced.

We offer a full range of sickness absence services from telephone consultations and one-off referrals through to regular on-site consultations, case management and sickness absence policy development.

So contact us today to see how we can help you.

Cost of Sickness Absence

Profit from Healthy Employees

Sickness cost of Absence from work cost the UK economy £13.2 billion as the average employee took almost seven (6.7) days off sick (source CBI, 2008 survey). The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (source CIPD's 2009 Absence Management survey) estimate that sickness absence costs £666 per employee per year and averaged 6.4 days per employee; giving an average cost of just over £100/day

At just £100/day this estimate probably under estimates all the extra unquantifiable costs such as Management time, loss of productivity, increased overtime or contractor levels, etc….

Even at this low estimate of £100/day, a quick calculation will show how the cost of absence can soon spirals upward. If we take the above figures and assume a company of 100 people then the cost at:

  • 3% absence = 100 people x 8 days x £100/day = £80k per annum
  • 4% absence = 100 people x 10 days x £100/day = £100k per annum
  • 5% absence = 100 people x 13 days x £100/day = £130k per annum
  • 6% absence = 100 people x 16 days x £100/day = £160k per annum

With higher than average absence levels the financial justification for investing in an OH service is straightforward. In the above example, if you could reduce absence by just 1% then this would generate an annual saving of circa £20k. This saving would more than pay for OccuMed's services!

It is recognised within the medical profession and beyond, that early assessment, diagnosis and medical intervention aids early return-to-work! So if you are going to do something do it now, not in two or three months time!

OccuMed Clinic Occupational Health is experienced in all aspects of Sickness Absence Management and we can help. Working together we can get your employees back to work quickly, productively and safely.

Contact OccuMed Clinic today and start saving money.
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