Occupational health telephone assessment questions

In this blog we present to you a list of occupational health telephone assessment questions that are generally asked. 

We will also briefly discuss what you can expect during a Occupational health telephone assessment, what information you should have at hand and what happens after a Occupational health telephone assessment.

Occupational health telephone assessment questions

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According to writers at Croner, an HR and health & safety service provider, here are some occupational health assessment questions you can expect during a telephone assessment:

  • Do you have an impairment which may affect your ability to work safely?
  • Do you have eyesight problems that glasses/contact lenses cannot correct?
  • Do you have hearing problems that a hearing aid cannot correct?
  • Do you currently have a drug or alcohol problem?
  • Do you experience fits, blackouts, or suffer from epilepsy?
  • Do you struggle when standing, bending, lifting, or any other movements?
  • Do you have any form of back problem?
  • Have you ever experienced discomfort or pain when using a computer keyboard?
  • Do you have any allergies?
  • Do you have asthma, bronchitis, or any other chest problem?
  • Do you suffer from diabetes, thyroid or gland problems?
  • Have you ever had an illness or injury caused, or made worse, by your work?
  • Do you suffer from heart disease or high blood pressure?
  • Are you currently taking any form of medication?

These questions are not universal and the issues that will be discussed will not be limited to this list.

 Overall, the questions that will be asked wll usually cover your medical history as well as how your medical history impacts your ability to work and manage your role in the workplace. 

These assessment questions could be to determine any medical questions in the case that you have been absent from work often or to determine your fitness to work or return to work. 

Other than these questions, if your condition has to do with mental health, the questions will vary based on the issue at hand such as questions on anxiety, stress, and depression.

Some questions that you can expect when it comes to mental health issues include:

  • Have you ever suffered from stress associated with work?
  • Are you currently receiving treatment for a mental health issue?
  • Have you previously suffered with mental illness or psychological problems?
  • Do you find that you’re worrying all the time while you’re at work?
  • Do you regularly experience unpleasant physical or psychological effects, such as panic attacks?

What to expect during your telephone assessment?

After you have been referred to Occupational health, it is likely that you will go through a medical assessment in the case that you do not have any medical diagnosis or in the case you are looking to join work after a sick leave. 

While assessments are usually face to face with a medical professional, in some cases consultations occur over the telephone or in more recent years, via video calls. 

If the assessment can be done remotely, the Occupational health department will send across a date and time of the planned call to you as well as your manager or employer. 

This referral to the OH service is more or less via referral by the company HR or your manager with your consent. 

The telephone consultation will usually take around 30 minutes; sometimes a little longer if the issues are complex. 

Ensure that you are in a room where you can talk privately and confidentially. They will then check your identity and ask for confirmation. 

Once your have been confirmed you will be asked for your verbal consent to carry out the telephone consultation and to release an Occupational Health report to your organisation after the assessment. 

Your consent is required for the consultation to proceed, if you do not want to give consent, inform your manager immediately and beforehand. 

The consultation may be required to record the session for the following reasons:

  • improve the quality of the services we provide
  • train and provide our employees with feedback
  • resolve any complaints or concerns that may arise

The individual who is present for the assessment has the right to refuse to be recorded and must inform the professional present as soon as possible if you do not want to be recorded. 

In the case of a missed call, the assessor and the Occupational Health services will try to reach out three times and if they are unable to contact you after three tries, they will inform your manager and leave a message on your answer phone.

What information should you have available?

In order for the telephone assessment to be effective and cover all basis, it is important that you have the following information at hand:

  • Details of any current prescription medication from your doctor or specialist.
  • Any relevant health information, such as diabetic monitoring diaries or mood diaries for psychological disorders.
  • Names of any specialists whose care you are under and details of any forthcoming appointments or operation dates 
  • If you have had any recent reports of investigations such as blood tests, X rays or scans. Ask your doctor about these recent reports and investigations. 
  • Details of how long your current Fit certificate runs if you have one. 

What happens after Occupational Health telephone assessment?

Following the telephone assessment, the Occupational health specialist will create a report on your case usually within one working day. 

The occupational health report will include information related to the employee’s medical condition, their ability to work, their needs of accommodation and support, as well as anything that can be done to help improve their well- being like referrals to medical services etc. 

The employees have a right to see the report before anyone else and requires their consent to be sent across to their manager or employer.

Usually the employee will  be given a few days to see the report and at this time, the employee can ask for facts to be corrected. The employee has the right to disagree with what is mentioned in the report.

While the OH specialist needs to change factual  information if the employee disagrees with it and there is no factual evidence,the report should mention any differences of opinion.

The report will usually mention the condition, medical situation, and answer any questions that have been specifically brought up. 

The report is then sent to the manager as well as to the employee, HR representative and, in some cases, the employee’s GP.

The most important aspect of the report is the advice that is given to employers and managers regarding what can be done to accommodate the employee within the work space and also their condition in terms of their fitness to work.

It is based on these inputs that the manager or employer should take steps such as giving medical leave of absence, recidong work hours, providing support etc to help the employee adjust to working with their medical condition. 

What is occupational health?

Occupational health is one area of the public health domain that is concerned with the physical, mental and social well-being of workers in all occupations.

This area of public health involves promoting, advocating, and maintaining the highest degree of well-being for workers in the workplace across various occupations. 

The main role of occupational health within the workforce is to support management of health issues of employees within the workplace and are concerned with how their occupation impacts the health of the employee. 

It is important to mention that occupational health, while they are occeneed about how the work or the workplace might impact on the employee, it is also focused on how the employees’ health may impact on their performance at work. 

Occupational health within the workplace provides support to employees by interpreting medical information of employees in the case that they are unwell and to present it to Managers in a way that allows for employee advocacy as well as makes rooms for accommodations to support the employee in the workplace.

The support they provide includes providing advice to both the managers and supervisors as well as the employees in areas related to:

  • How the medical condition impacts an employee’s ability to work and perform well on the job as well as the impact it has on their ability to carry out their responsibilities. 
  • Workplace adjustments and accommodations for the employees well being such as reducing work hours or workload. 
  • Time scales for the return of employees to work in the case they wish to take a medical leave of absence. 
  • Advice and referrals to Counselling and Psychological Services or any medical services. 
  • Providing employees with information related to employees fitness to return to work and  remain at their present role.

Occupational health specialists are the professionals that employees often reach out for guidance on the issues mentioned above.

Conclusion

In this blog we presented to you a list of occupational health telephone assessment questions that are generally asked. 

We also briefly discussed what you can expect during a Occupational health telephone assessment, what information you should have at hand and what happens after a Occupational health telephone assessment.

FAQ related to Occupational health telephone assessment questions

What is an occupational health assessment and why is it important?

An occupational health assessment refers to an assessment and review session between an employee and an OH specialist to review how effectively a person can perform their job based on their current health consciousness. 

It is important because it helps companies manage the health and safety of their employees as well as promote adjustments to a role or environment will help employees do well at their jobs. 

What happens at an occupational health assessment in the UK?

At an occupational health assessment sessions, the OH specialist or professional will do the following:

  • Check the details on your referral form
  • Discuss the contents with you and ask you about your current health problems. T
  • They will also chat about your job, the activities involved and identify the areas where you might be experiencing difficulties.
  • Cover any treatment they’re having.
  • Discuss any concerns they have about returning to work.

What is occupational health checkup?

Occupational health check up refers to regular health screenings at the workplace that update employees about their health condition and encourage them to adopt a healthy lifestyle. 

What questions will occupational health ask me?

The usually questions that will be asked during an occupational health consultation includes questions about:

  • their health problems.
  • any treatment they’re having.
  • any concerns they have about returning to work.

References

Occupational Health. Croner. Retrieved on 24th March 2022. https://croner.co.uk/resources/occupational-health/

Telephone health assessments: good practice in occupational health. Personnel Today. Retrieved on 24th March 2022. https://www.personneltoday.com/hr/telephone-health-assessments-good-practice-occupational-health/

What to expect during your telephone assessment. HealthManagemnet. Retrieved on 25th March 2022. https://healthmanagement.co.uk/client-area/what-to-expect-during-your-telephone-assessment/

Six best-practice tips on how to make an occupational health referral. Fusion Occupational Health. Retrieved on 24th March 2022. https://www.fusionoh.com/blog/how-to-make-occupational-health-referral

Occupational Health Referrals. Guide. University of Glasgow. Retrieved on 24th March 2022. https://www.gla.ac.uk/media/Media_554573_smxx.pdf

Questions to ask when you are submitting an Occupational Health Referral. FusionHR. Retrieved on 24th March 2022. https://www.fusionbusiness.org.uk/occupationalhealthreferral/

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