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Occupational Health update. David Maslen-Jones RGN MBA CMIOSH Department of Health Boorman Champion for NHS London. Contents. The Equality Act Screening for Doctors. The Equality Act 2010: Section 60. “It is illegal to ask job applicants questions about their health”

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Occupational health update

Occupational Health update

David Maslen-Jones


Department of Health Boorman Champion for NHS London


  • The Equality Act

  • Screening for Doctors

The equality act 2010 section 60
The Equality Act 2010: Section 60

  • “It is illegal to ask job applicants questions about their health”

  • 1: Before They make an offer of employment, both conditional or unconditional

  • 2: Where they are not in a position to offer work straight away (i.e. before including them in a pool of applicants from whom they intend to select a person to offer work)

Equality act 2010 basics

Equality Act 2010: Basics

The Act harmonises existing provisions and defines discrimination in terms of nine “protected characteristics”

1: Age

2: Disability

3: Gender re-assignment

4: Marriage and civil partnerships

5: Pregnancy and Maternity

6: Race

7: Religion or Belief

8: Sex

9: Sexual Orientation

Discrimination arising from disability
Discrimination arising from disability

  • It is unlawful to treat a disabled person unfavourably because of something arising from the disability, for example the need to take a period of disability related absence

Protecting carers from discrimination
Protecting Carers from discrimination

  • An employer cannot refuse to recruit or promote someone because of their caring responsibilities

  • For example: caring for a disabled person or having caring responsibilities at either end of the age spectrum, that is caring for a child or an elderly relative

  • Attridge Law LLP v Coleman


  • Employers may ask questions to establish whether or not an applicant will be able to carry out a function that is intrinsic to the work concerned

  • Intrinsic means “absolutely fundamental” to the job

  • To make reasonable adjustments prior to interview

  • Where there is “Positive Action” to recruit disabled people

  • Where it is an occupational requirement

Medical personnel will ask in the offer letter
Medical Personnel will ask in the offer letter

  • Non clinical staff

  • “Do you have any disability which may affect your work, for which you may need adjustments to your job or workplace?”

  • If the answer were yes then the line manager/HR/OH would deal with it as they already do now when this arises during employment or after long term sickness absence.

  • Clinical/Safety Critical posts

  • Clinical staff in safety critical posts will need to be treated slightly differently by having minimal screening together with the obligatory communicable diseases questions which the current changes will not impact on.

  • It is likely that there will be a question for this group along the lines of

  • “Are you currently on any medication and have you been under the care of a doctor in the last five years?”

  • (NHS Employers: 2010)

What are you doing
What are you doing

  • NICE TB Guidance

  • Immunisation Validation

  • Health at Work questionnaire

  • What other questions should we include ?

  • Latex

  • Need for reasonable adjustment

The history of screening for medics
The History of screening for medics

  • Hippocratic Oath

  • Guidance on Hepatitis B

  • Serious Communicable diseases

  • The Green Book

  • Dh Guidance

Serious communicable diseases
Serious Communicable diseases

  • New to the NHS

  • New to a role involving EPP

  • HCW from abroad

  • IVS-British Laboratory

Holding clearance data
Holding Clearance Data

  • Paper Records

  • The Smart Card

  • ESR


  • Confidentiality

  • Time

  • Cost

A solution for london
A Solution for London


  • Variations in OH Software

  • McKesson

Junior doctors changeover group
Junior Doctors Changeover group

Links developed between group and London Confederation of Occupational Health Practitioners (David Maslen-Jones and John Harrison)

No longer concerns about accepting records from each other across London

HRD’s need to nominate people within Occupational Health Departments to have user responsibility (URP)

Group recommend bi-directional link built between ESR and existing systems....cost v benefit