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The At Work Partnership and the Occupational Health [at Work]  journal are delighted to send you our January 2017 occupational health email newsletter, highlighting key OH news.

Age discrimination
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has upheld a Spanish regional police service’s bar on accepting recruits above the age of 35 years. The age discrimination was justified because physical fitness was a ‘genuine and determining occupational requirement’ for the role of a regional police officer. The case (Gorka Salaberria Sorondo v Academia Vasca de Policía y Emergencias) had been referred to the CJEU by the Basque High Court for a ruling on the interpretation of various provisions of the European equality framework directive (2000/78/EC).

European working conditions survey
A fifth of workers in Europe (22%) have to work in their free time to meet work demands several times a month, the sixth European Working Conditions Study has found. It also reported that structural inequalities and differences in terms of gender, employment status and occupation are still significant for workers in Europe. To gauge working conditions, the study examined physical environment, work intensity, working time quality, social environment, skills and discretion, and prospects and earnings.

Work and health green paper consultation meeting
The Faculty of Occupational Medicine and the Society of Occupational Medicine will host a consultation meeting to discuss the work, health and disability green paper[1]. The meeting, on 31 January 2017, will be held at The Principal Hotel in York. The outcome of the discussions will be fed back to the Department of Health and the Department for Work and Pensions. Contact         

Mental health as an asset
People with mental health problems made an estimated £226 billion gross value added contribution to UK GDP in 2015, according to a report looking at how mental health issues in the workplace can be framed differently. The report Added value: mental health as a workplace asset recommends that employers ‘value the diversity and transferable skills that the lived experience of mental health problems brings’.

Flu vaccines for healthcare workers
Over half (55.5%) of all eligible frontline healthcare workers in England have been vaccinated against seasonal influenza in the current campaign, figures from Public Health England show. This represents 533,389 vaccinations, the highest registered uptake when compared with previous winters, and has already surpassed the final uptake figure of 50.6% for the 2015/16 season. 

GMC guidance on confidentiality
The General Medical Council (GMC) is expected to publish a new edition of its guidance on confidentiality at the end of January. As in the previous edition, it is likely to include information on how doctors should ensure confidentiality when receiving requests for information from employers and insurers and to reinforce the need to obtain a patient’s explicit consent in these circumstances. The GMC has spent two years revising the guidance, previously published in 2009. 

HSE strategy
Work-related stress, musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders and occupational lung disease are priorities in the HSE’s recently published Health and Work strategy. Stress and MSK disorders account for around 80% of all working time lost due to illness, according to the HSE. It also reports that there are around 12,000 deaths each year from occupational lung disease. The trade union Prospect has welcomed the report. Its deputy general secretary Garry Graham said: ‘The government’s 2011 policy document, Good Health and Safety, Good for Everyone, said almost nothing about occupational illness or disease, so the new strategy is a step forward.’

Why occupational health?
The Faculty of Occupational Medicine (FOM) and the Society of Occupational Medicine have launched a campaign, #WhyOccupationalHealth, to raise the profile of occupational medicine and occupational health to other clinicians and key stakeholders across the health and work sectors. The FOM is asking OH practitioners to submit stories to the campaign to demonstrate the impact of their work in the past 12 months. The stories will be shared on the campaign website

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Research Plus
The latest Research Plus is available free of charge on our website

Research Plus, funded by a grant from the British Occupational Health Research Foundation, is freely available to all OH professionals. It is published as part of the Occupational Health [at Work] journal. It highlights original research and systematic reviews from a wide range of current publications meeting evidence quality criteria. 

Please visit to read all of the articles in Research Plus free of charge from 2007 to the present day.
The latest issue looks at research in the areas of wearable technology and weight loss, pilot fatigue,  cancer risks, bullying and low-back pain sickness absence amongst others. Here is a sample article:

Impact of atopic dermatitis on skin absorption
People with atopic dermatitis (with or without lesions) experience at least twice the absorption of chemicals through their skin, compared with healthy controls, this systematic review found. It included 40 studies, assessing dermal absorption of drugs (such as topical corticosteroids), dyes and chemicals found in personal care products, cosmetics and cleaning agents. The findings have implications both for the correct dosing of topical treatments for skin complaints and for risk assessments associated with environmental and occupational exposure to chemicals, for example in hairdressing, metalworking and healthcare.
British Journal of Dermatology 2016; online first: doi: 10.1111/bjd.15065. 

To read all of these articles free of charge in the latest issue of Research Plus, please visit our website.

Occupational Health [at Work] subscriber information
The latest issue of Occupational Health [at Work] was mailed out on 4 December 2016.

CPD Personal Learning Zone
Subscribers can now log CPD hours online, by reading and reflecting on featured articles and other signposted content. For doctors and nurses, the documented learning can be used as part of the evidence for revalidation; and for other workplace health professionals, hours can be logged in learning portfolios.

View the full contents pages for December 2016/January 2017 issue

Find out more about print and online subscriptions to Occupational Health [at Work] - a unique publication edited by Dr John Ballard and  providing expertly written legal, practical and management OH information.

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Conference and training news
from The At Work Partnership

Certificate in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) skills for OH professionals
This renowned training course is now open to OH professionals, counsellors, occupational physiotherapists and other allied health professionals, such as occupational therapists, practitioner psychologists, case managers and vocational rehabilitation specialists.
Part one: 16-18 January 2017
Part two: 9-10 February 2017


Preview 2017: OH Legal and Professional Update
2 February 2017

This annual legal and professional update examines hot issues affecting OH practice including Brexit and other topical areas.
Reduced rates for self-funded delegates and multiple bookings available!

Managing Mental Health at Work
3 February 2017

 A one day workshop examining how organisations can best manage mental health at work.
Reduced rates for self-funded delegates and multiple bookings available!

Certificate in Managing OH Services
27 February 2017 – 1 March 2017

This three-day course is designed to equip you with the essential management tools to deliver a successful occupational health service.
Don't miss out on this essential course that gives you the  understanding of how to enhance your OH service and improve your own management skills.

OH Report Writing
ManchesterFriday 24 March 2017
Belfast Friday 28 April 2017
LondonMonday 15 May 2017
How to prepare concise, well-written OH reports that will provide quality
information for managers, be understood by employees, and be defensible if the information contained in them is ever required in legal proceedings.
Book and pay 6 weeks before the training to save £50 + VAT!
Special rates for self-funded delegates from £235 + VAT!


OH jobs listing

Occupational Health Advisor/ Nurse
University of Essex

Closing date for applications: 20 January 2017

Senior Occupational Health Advisor
Blackpool Council

Closing date for applications: 31 January 2017

A variety of OH vacancies nationwide from:
Key People

To see the full list of OH vacancies, please click here.

New service from  The At Work Partnership:
OH Law Online

This unique online OH law subscription service provides an in depth explanation of the key areas of the law – and how they affect your work.

Expertly edited
The site is edited by Allan Tyrer, a well-respected writer on equality law. One of the UK’s most eminent authorities on occupational health law, Professor Diana Kloss is the consultant editor.

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Please visit our site to view all of the latest news. You'll find one section of the site is available FREE to show the depth and quality of information.
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