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On-Employment 
Screening

On-employment screening (sometimes called pre-employment screening) is specific to your organisation; it allows you to set a health baseline for new joiners and ensures that appropriate workplace adjustments can be implemented at the start of a role.

It is good practice for all employers to use pre-placement, or on-employment, health screening assessments for all new members of staff to ensure that their new staff are fit to undertake the role applied for.

 

Health screening assessments should ideally be undertaken prior to starting any new role and in fact many employment contracts will be conditional upon the individual passing the relevant health assessment and/or medical.

Where this health information has not previously been captured it should be captured retrospectively, as soon as reasonably practicable.

 

Although it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that new employees have the required skills, knowledge and understanding to undertake the tasks within all aspects of their role. It is occupational health’s role to ensure that an individual is fit to undertake their role. This is of particular importance where an individual works within a safety critical role and/or has a long-term underlying health condition.

 

The benefit of occupational health collecting this confidential information, as opposed to the employer (line manager, HR or health and safety colleague) is that it ensures that an occupational health professional is tasked with assessing the individual’s fitness for work. It also ensures that employers comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) in the processing and storage of this special category health data.

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The required health information is obtained from employees using our online portal eOPAS, with an email being sent automatically to the recipients preferred email address with all necessary instructions on how to register and complete the allocated questionnaire.

 

Upon receipt of the completed health questionnaire, occupational health will determine whether any additional information or clarification is required, and where necessary telephone the individual to discuss any condition or ongoing treatment, including medication which may impact upon an individual’s ability to undertake their role.

 

Where necessary and with the consent of the employee occupational health will advise the employer of any relevant health issues and or adjustments which may assist the individual i.e. if an individual is an insulin dependent diabetic, guidance will be provided about ensuring that first aiders are aware of the action to take in the event of a hypoglycaemic episode.

 

In more complex cases an occupational health review may be advised 6 – 12 weeks following commencement of the new employee’s role to determine whether there are any ongoing issues relating to their health and work.

 

Any health screening process should include all workers, where utilising an agency for short term staff provision employers should ensure that suitable checks upon the health of staff provided have taken place. Employers have a duty of care to ensure that reasonable adjustments are made to enable all staff to undertake their role effectively.

All new employees should of course undergo baseline health surveillance relevant to the area of the business in which they will be working at the earliest opportunity, ideally prior to commencing their role or within the first 4 weeks of employment; this should be repeated periodically dependent upon the workplace risk assessment and method statement.

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