Work Related Health Monitoring
WOHC’s Occupational Health Nurses are all trained in hearing testing and the interpretation of the results. They can also provide education on the effects of noise on health to ensure individuals understand what they must do to reduce the risks of hearing loss. Hearing protection is also checked to ensure it is in good condition and that workers know how to use it correctly.
Vision screening is important to ensure that your employees have visual acuity and colour vision perception adequate for the tasks that their job requires. Good vision is necessary for people to perform their work safely and comfortably.
Vision screening is completed as part of a pre-employment health assessment, and this baseline screening should be followed with annual monitoring.
Lung Function Testing
Our lungs can be damaged by agents in our environment including chemical mists, fumes, smoking, allergens, and other airborne contaminants.
In the workplace staff may encounter hazardous substances – either as part of a chemical process, or contaminants generated by certain work activities. Welding fumes, quarry dust, sawdust, and plant/animal aerosols are all examples of common air contaminants in the workplace. The masks and respirators worn to combat this, these are most effective if in good condition and used correctly. The employer is still required to monitor the health of individuals wearing this personal protective equipment by engaging qualified occupational health nurses to undertake lung function testing on their employees.
It is advisable to carry out pre-employment lung function testing as a baseline, and thereafter undertake annual monitoring for all staff exposed to any respiratory hazard. WOHC nurses are trained and qualified in the use of the lung function machines, and how to interpret the results and give appropriate advice. A respiratory questionnaire will be completed before each test to establish if the person has previously been exposed to any hazards of this sort.
Biological monitoring is required when workers are exposed to known health hazards such as certain toxic chemicals, and heavy metals such as lead and cadmium.
Testing is carried out by taking blood or urine samples to test how much of the toxic substance has been processed by the body. This gives a good indication how well the hazard is controlled in the workplace. WOHC’s Occupational Health Nurses can advise what tests are required and arrange for these to be done. They are also able to interpret the results and report back to the employee and employer so any further actions can be taken to modify work practices if needed.