These CPD activities, compiled by Professor Anne Harris, are intended to complement the CPD article The origins of the occupational health technician.
Sisters Aranya and Tammy moved to the UK three years ago. Both qualified as nurses in Thailand but as they are not registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council they are unable to practice as registered nurses in the UK. Both had worked for two years as staff nurses in their home country of Thailand: Aranya on an ENT ward and Tammy a respiratory ward. Aranya has just completed a sports science degree and Tammy a BSc in business studies. They have both worked in general practice as healthcare assistants in order to fund their studies.
They now wish to establish their own business, and are considering working as occupational health technicians (OHTs). They know you work as an occupational health nurse specialist practitioner. They are seeking your advice regarding whether they are appropriately qualified and experienced to undertake such a venture. You have agreed to meet with them to discuss their prospective business initiative. They have invited you to consider joining them in this venture.
Reflect on the article you have just read and access the following resources in order to have some pointers to think about when you meet.
Frame your thoughts by reading the Society of Occupational Medicine publication Occupational health: the value proposition.
Consider the business case for the provision of occupational healthcare, and in particular the health promotion and health surveillance knowledge and skills that Aranya and Tammy already possess.
Read the Black report Working for a healthier tomorrow. Identify the key points within this paper of which Aranya and Tammy should be aware. Look specifically at chapter three,which considers the role of the workplace in health and wellbeing.
Reflect on the importance of universal access to occupational health. These online lectures provide a national and international perspective:
University of Glasgow/Society of Occupational Medicine Summit – Universal Access to Occupational Health (Part 1)
Includes presentations by Professor Dame Carol Black, Professor Ewan Macdonald (University of Glasgow) and Owe Osterbacka (Finnish expert in occupational health).
University of Glasgow/Society of Occupational Medicine Summit – Universal Access to Occupational Health (Part 2)
Includes presentations giving an international flavour by Dr Ivan Ivanov (the World Health Organization), Ioannis Anyfantis (European Agency for Safety and Health) and Owen Tudor (International Trade Union Confederation).
University of Glasgow/Society of Occupational Medicine Summit – Universal Access to Occupational Health (Part 3)
Includes a presentation by Prof Maggie Rae, president of the Faculty of Public Health.
Read the Professional development support standards for nurses in general practice . Refer to the section which explores the standards for supporting health care assistants in general practice. How might this be transferable to the role of the occupational health technician?
Now refer to these resources:
Skills for Care’s Care Certificate
Petrova et al: Benefits and challenges of employing health care assistants in general practice: a qualitative study of GPs’ and practice nurses’ perspectives. Family Practice, Volume 27, Issue 3, June 2010, Pages 303–311
These resources relate to the contribution of health care assistants in general practice. What might be transferable to OHTs and the OH setting?
How do these publications relate to the role of the OHT?
Is there any further certificated training you would recommend they consider including that which would further confirm their competence in the skills required for statutory and non-statutory health surveillance?