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What we do

Occupational health services and advice available to UCL staff and students.

What OHW do

We offer the following services and advice to UCL staff and professionally regulated students. 

Referral to Workplace Health for advice

If you are concerned that work or study is affecting your health or that a health problem is affecting your ability to do your job, you can arrange a referral for occupational health advice. 

We see referrals for staff including PhD students, and professionally regulated students (PRS) – including in medicine, teaching, pharmacy, speech and language therapy, and doctoral clinical psychology students. All other student groups should contact Student Support and Wellbeing

We provide advice for staff on adjustments to work or study to prevent or reduce the risk of work-related health problems.  If you require treatment, investigations or specialist referral, you will also need to consult your GP.

  • Manager Referral
    We accept referral from anyone who has line management or supervisory responsibility for the person being referred – including line managers and professional supervisors, or from a PRS’s course directors or administrators, programme lead or tutor). HR Business Partners may also refer into Workplace Health.

    It is important that you discuss any problems you are having with work with your manager, supervisor or UCL school representative  You can do this in a general way explaining the effect on your work/study; you do not necessarily have to disclose personal information. They can then refer you for occupational health assessment advice. This will ensure that your manager/supervisor is aware of your situation and is able to provide suitable workplace support.

    Please see our Manager Referral page for details.

  • Self Referral
    You may also refer yourself directly to Workplace Health, but for the reasons given above we encourage you to also discuss problems with your manager. Please complete and email the below self referral form to ohsadmin@ucl.ac.uk

  • Self referral if you are part of a Health Surveillance programme
    If you are part of a regular health surveillance programme for work place hazards, then you will have received information on how and when to contact the occupational health service if you are concerned about your health in relation to your work.  For investigation and treatment of health problems you will need to use primary care services.

Whatever the route of referral we will send advise to the referrer, with your consent, if any adjustments to your work need to be considered. Advice given will not contain confidential medical detail without your consent, but will be concerned with advice on the types of adjustments that might be required to the work equipment, tasks or environment.
 

Advice on workplace adjustments for disabled staff

We provide advice to UCL staff and their managers on adjustments to work tasks, workplace equipment design and the working environment. The occupational health practitioner will undertake an assessment and may advise on the need for further specialist advice or assessment as appropriate.

Individuals can refer themselves or be referred for advice at any stage of their employment.  For more information, including support and funding for reasonable adjustments for disabled staff please see the pages managed by our colleagues in UCL Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: Disability Equality - Information for Staff and Managers

Health surveillance and job hazard identification at job offer

The aim of health surveillance is:

  • For the manager or supervisor to identify any work related health risks from the proposed employment.
     
  • To provide baseline health-surveillance or immunisation programmes for the new employee.
     
  • To add the new employee to the Workplace Health recall process for any follow-up surveillance or immunisations required.

Routine on-employment health surveillance is undertaken following a job offer on the following UCL staff groups:

  • Laboratory staff (including maintenance staff), clinical academics, clinical researchers, food handlers, all staff who drive on UCL business and some general maintenance staff.
     
  • Staff working with human blood, tissues or bodily fluids.
     
  • Staff working with animal allergens, latex, genetically modified organisms or dangerous pathogens.

Please complete a Job hazard form in order to request inclusion of new staff, post-grad students or staff changing roles, in UCL health surveillance or immunisation programmes for specific workplace health risks. The form must be completed by the employee’s Manager or ‘Designated Departmental Contact’.

 

Research Passports

Staff with patient contact will also require Occupational Health clearance from the relevant NHS Trust to ensure compliance with the Trust's infection control policies and associated health-screening procedures and may require a 'research passport'. The employee’s supervisor or line manager will decide if this is required.

The date that the recall email will be generated for the next stage of any surveillance process.

Health concerns and job applicants

If you have concerns about sickness absence or the health of an applicant once a job offer has been made, you should refer the applicant to Workplace Health so that an assessment can be made. 

Please use the ‘on-offer referral form’ for advice on any alternations that you may wish to consider in regards to the job role. You may wish to discuss your referral with your HR Business Partner before sending the form to Workplace Health .

Service standards
Workplace Health will review the completed on-offer referral form and contact the applicant within two working days of receipt of the form to make an appointment. If the applicant is not contactable or does not attend for an appointment, the manager will be informed within two working days.

Once the employee has attended their appointment, Workplace Health ill create a report and send a copy to the manager, the applicant and the HR Business Partner for your area, advising of any adjustments required or limitations the applicant may have. 

Drivers health screening

We provide baseline (pre-placement / assignment), and appropriate subsequent health screening for all staff members who drive on behalf of UCL. To refer someone for a Driver’s Health Screening please complete the Job Hazard form.

Health surveillance under COSHH regulations 2002

The Control Of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH), require employers to prevent, or if this is not reasonably practicable, control employees’ exposure to hazardous substances. In addition, regulation 11 of COSHH states that health surveillance is considered appropriate where:

  • The exposure of the employee to a substance hazardous to health is such that identifiable disease or adverse health effect may be related to the exposure;
  • There is a reasonable likelihood that the disease or effect may occur under the particular conditions of the work;
  • There are valid techniques for detecting indications of the disease or effect.

We provide a health surveillance programme for relevant occupational groups at UCL. The occupational groups currently identified work with respiratory sensitisers and in particular Laboratory Allergens (LAA) and Latex.

The UCL Approved Code of Practice (UCL- ACOP) ‘Control of Exposure to Laboratory Allergens’ deals with the organisational aspects of managing the risks associated with laboratory allergens.

To refer someone for Health Surveillance please complete the Job Hazardbelow.  All staff and PhD students may access this service. We are able to offer this service to BSc and MSc students at cost to the School. ​​​​

Work related immunisation

Certain UCL staff groups, who because of the nature of their work, could be accidentally exposed, to biological agents, may be at risk of infection.
These staff groups have been identified as those who: 

  • regularly handle pathogens or potentially infected specimens e.g. laboratory staff, research staff, clinical staff
     
  • cleaning and waste services staff who handle hazardous waste

Hepatitis B is a blood borne virus spread through contact with human blood or tissue. It is the only blood borne virus for which vaccine is available. Anyone who is exposed to a potential source of the virus should be offered vaccination. Vaccination consists of three injections over the course of a six month period. A five year booster is recommended.

 

Travel vaccines for work

Workplace Health is able to advise staff on all aspects of work related travel health. Please note that advice regarding travel vaccinations cannot be given over the telephone; all consultations require a face-to-face consultation with an Occupational Health Adviser (OHA).

Travel Vaccine Service

If a  job hazard form has not been completed at the start of employment, it must be completed and returned to Workplace Health at ohsadmin@ucl.ac.uk  by your manager to confirm that you are travelling abroad for work purposes. Please arrange your appointment well in advance (preferably at least two months) of your departure; immunisations may need to be given over a period of time as some take time to become effective.  Once received, Workplace Health will contact you to arrange an appointment.

However, please contact Workplace Health even if you are going at short notice - some protection may be better than none.  During periods of peak activity we may not be able to offer travel consultations. In such instances you may wish to contact your own GP or a private travel health clinic and claim any costs back from your department

If you require prescribed medicines while abroad, please discuss this with your GP. 

To make an appointment with an please call 020 7679 2802 (Internal: 32802).  At your appointment you will be asked for details of your travel plans, including dates of travel, countries visited on route, destinations and type of accommodation. This allows us to provide you with up to date advice relevant to your trip.

Please bring previous vaccinations records with you to your appointment.

Food handlers screening

The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 requires UCL to ensure, so far as is reasonably practical, the health and safety of all employees while at work, and to ensure that other people are not put at risk by any work related activities.

To refer someone for a food handler screening please complete the below Job Hazard form.


Please also see the Food Handlers policy. 


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