An Occupational Physician is a medical expert who is a member of the Australasian Faculty of Occupational Medicine (AFOEM). Occupational Physicians have extensive qualifications (a 6-year medical degree and 4-year training program with the AFOEM) and provide advice on the clinical management of people who work. They have specialised knowledge and skills within two key areas of medicine – Occupational Medicine and Environmental Medicine.
Occupational Medicine takes a preventative approach to health and safety in the workplace by reviewing how a work environment can impact an employee’s health, and how an employee’s health can affect their work.
Environmental Medicine focuses on the human health impacts of industrial practices on the broader environment outside of the industrial site.
Occupational and Environmental Physicians (OEPs)
Occupational and Environmental Physicians (OEPs) provide specialist knowledge to ensure a healthy, productive workforce and connect a workplace with the diverse range of health services necessary to optimise the health and wellbeing of employees.
There are only 500 Occupational Physicians in Australia with the majority of them working in urban centres. Occupational physicians work in a variety of settings and collaborate with other health professionals to assist in the management of injured or ill workers.
KINNECT’s Occupational Physicians work alongside KINNECT’s other allied health professionals and are able to:
- Recognise and construct preventative strategies aimed at reducing workplace morbidity. Such strategies include the management of medical conditions, in particular those of a musculoskeletal nature
- Assist KINNECT’s allied health professionals in complex scenarios where appropriate and targeted management is crucial to a successful outcome
- Provide management to employees with chronic illnesses to assist them in remaining in the workforce for as long possible
- Diagnose complex medical conditions and determine cause and effect
- Provide and assessment of employees affected by acute exposure to environmental contaminants such as crystalline silica to advise on the best course of action