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Written by
on 09 April 2013


As an employer you must ensure that your workers are not exposed to health risks.  One of the ways to spot problems is health surveillance. The surveillance allows you to spot any problems and apply corrections and new control measures when necessary.  You need to conduct health surveillance if you run a business where employees are exposed to any of the following:

  • Dust
  • Fumes
  • Noise
  • Solvents
  • Biological agents
  • Vibrations
  • Work in compressed air
  • Ionising radiation
  • Deal with any substances that pose health risks

What is Health Surveillance?

To perform health surveillance you need to carry out frequent health checks. This allows you to:

  • Spot health problems early
  • Introduce controls
  • Provide new data that employers can use to evaluate health risks
  • Provides a way for employees to raise their concerns about their health
  • Shows any problems with current control measures which can then be used with risk assessments
  • Reinforces training

If you are unsure as to whether you need to perform health surveillance you should use a risk assessment. The assessment will help you to identify the health risks and those who could have ill health if they are not provided with safe working methods, protection, control measures or continued surveillance.

Each employee should be monitored rather than conducting blanket coverage.  Detailed records need to be kept so the information can be evaluated and health conditions followed to see how they develop or worsen.  Keep details of each employee and the findings of each check that is carried out. Make sure that the details concerning the type of work, tools and risks that are being faced by each employee. Store the records in a safe place and hand over the records if you decide to sell your business on to a new owner and the individual being monitored.

Health and Safety Consultants are there to Help You

If you wish to learn more about the risks that are faced by your employees, conducting risk assessments or health surveillance you can contact your Veritas Consulting Health and Safety Consultants. They will be able to give you the assistance you need to ensure you are in compliance with health and safety laws.

Call 0800 1488 677 and ask about the health and safety services for occupational health and safety.

About the author

David Cant is a Director at Veritas Consulting. The SME’s favourite go-to consultant for health and safety know-how. Bucket loads of experience. Fluent in practical advice. Solutionist with a brain you can pick. You can find him across social media on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin.