Referrals to Occupational Health are normally made by the manager:

Refer your employee to occupational health

Individuals can self refer via the self-referral form, but we advise you to discuss this with your line manager before doing so if at all possible. It is nearly always helpful to have the input of your line manager.

Note that we will do our very best to arrange and if necessary change appointment times to suit availability. Once agreed, if you do not attend an appointment for whatever reason, one final appointment will be offered. If you do not attend this second appointment no further appointments will be made available.

Any management decision from this point may then have to be made without the benefit of Occupational Health advice.

When to refer to Occupational Health

There are several reasons an employee may be referred to Occupational Health. For example:

  • where the referring manager has concerns about the impact of the employee’s health on their work or concerns about the impact of work on their health, and wishes to seek advice
  • the employee has been off work sick for four weeks or more. This is normally considered long-term sickness absence and a referral of the employee to Occupational Health is advisable
  • the employee is due to return to work soon after a period of sickness absence

In all such cases Occupational Health advice can help identify specific areas of support or adjustments an employee may require to allow them to perform their role. Sometimes restrictions on the type of activity they should be performing may be identified.

Following referral

When a referral is received, an appointment is sent to the employee by post, email or arranged directly with the employee’s manager for them.

At the appointment the Occupational Health Adviser will normally:

  • discuss the referral with the employee
  • take an appropriate history of health problems and/or problems in the workplace
  • attempt to advise the employee appropriately
  • with the employee’s consent, formulate a written response to their management team

The written report is a response to the questions posed by the management team in the referral. It will usually be emailed to the employee’s line manager and Human Resources Adviser. A copy of this report is always provided to the employee.

Other actions which may be required include:

  • obtaining consent to obtain a medical report from the employee’s GP or consultant
  • visiting the employee’s workplace to perform an assessment
  • arranging further meetings, which may include the employee, to examine all information and advice
  • arranging a review appointment with the OH Advisor or sometimes with the Physician