Protecting Workers and Promoting Health : The Importance of Health Surveillance Offshore

An important part of occupational health is how work, and the work environment can impact upon workers’ health. Having a robust health surveillance program in place to monitor this is a vital component of effective health and safety management offshore. Furthermore, according to the HSE Executive, these health checks may be required by law for employees who are exposed to certain hazards including noise or vibration, ionising radiation, solvents, fumes, dusts, biological agents and other substances hazardous to health, or work in compressed air.

What is Health Surveillance?

Health surveillance is a scheme of repeated health checks which are designed to identify ill health effects from specific identified hazards in the workplace. Effective health surveillance can protect the health of employees by early detection of adverse changes or disease. Health surveillance can also inform the effectiveness of control measures.

Benefits of Health Surveillance

The benefits of ongoing health surveillance are numerous and significant and include:

Early Detection of Health Problems: Regular health monitoring can detect health problems in workers at an early stage, allowing for prompt intervention and treatment

Prevention of Occupational Illnesses: Health surveillance can help identify and manage potential hazards in the workplace, reducing the risk of occupational illness.

Improved Safety: Health surveillance can help identify workers who may be at risk of injury or accidents, allowing for appropriate safety measures to be put in place.

Compliance with Regulations: Many offshore workplaces are required to have health surveillance programs in place to comply with local and international regulations.

Increased Worker Morale: A health surveillance program can help demonstrate to workers that their employer is committed to their health and safety, leading to increased job satisfaction and morale.

Reduced Absenteeism: Early detection and treatment of health problems can help reduce the number of sick days taken by workers, leading to improved productivity and reduced costs.


How Can EMS Assist?

EMS Assist can deliver health surveillance programs globally, geared towards protecting the health, safety, and welfare of our clients’ workforces.

Our Health Surveillance program is comprised of the following elements:

Health Risk Assessment (HRA) – EMS Assist can deploy an Occupational Hygienist to client work sites to complete an HRA based on the standards documented in IOGP 343 – Health Management in the Oil and Gas Industry.

In this process, workplace risks will be assessed and the likelihood of exposure to chemical, physical and biological hazards evaluated.

Information gathered from the assessment and exposure monitoring can then be used to implement prevention and control measures aimed at eliminating and reducing exposure to hazards in order to protect employee health.

Health Surveillance Plan – EMS Assist will work closely with clients to create a health surveillance plan based upon the workplace hazards identified in the HRA. Baselines will be determined, and plans made for regular health checks based on hazards such as noise, HAVs, etc.

Collection of Data – In the offshore environment, EMS Assist Medics at the worksite are fully trained to conduct health surveillance for applicable personnel. Additionally, EMS Assist can arrange health surveillance for employees at a specified location onshore as required.

Monitoring – The data collected will be analysed and follow-up actions will be recommended. We provide our clients with regular updates and reports so appropriate actions can be taken in advance – prevention is always better.


To hear more about our services and how we could support your operation please contact:

+44 191 537 1629

We would also love to hear from any medical professionals who would be interested in registering with EMS Assist for future opportunities – please get in touch at the following email address:

Thank you!

The EMS Team


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