All Party Parliamentary Group on Occupational Safety and Health

The Council for Work and Health supports the recommendations of the report of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Occupational Safety and Health on the occupational medicine workforce crisis. 

Much of the research underlying it was done by a sub-committee of the Council chaired by Professor John Harrison.  The need to protect the health of workers and to rehabilitate sick and disabled workers is both an economic and public health priority.  There is evidence that good health is good for business and that money spent on prevention and vocational rehabilitation is a good investment. Keeping people at work and off benefits and reducing sickness absence is of significant benefit to the national economy.  

But there is already a serious shortage of trained occupational health professionals, especially doctors, which is likely to become catastrophic in the next ten years if nothing is done to recruit new entrants to the profession.  Medical students need to be made aware of the specialty of occupational medicine and that work is a clinical outcome.  More occupational medicine training posts need to be funded.  The report highlights how poorly covered by occupational health support is the UK workforce compared to many of our competitors in Europe. 

The Council commends the report to the government, employers, the NHS, Health Education England and the General Medical Council and the Royal Colleges.


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