Health surveillance is a process of on-going monitoring of employees to detect whether they’re working in circumstances that could be harmful.
Companies need to put health surveillance into place when hazards such as noise, manual handling, biological agents and other factors influence the workplace. However, employers sometimes wrongly consider surveillance as a method for preventing harmful situations. Even though this is a convenient approach, it can not avoid employee exposure to dangerous situations. Complete prevention of these serious situations, is the most appropriate way of controlling risks.
Moreover, health surveillance is considered part of health risk management and requires a systematic approach for early detection of diseases. Besides that, it gives employees a positive feeling when they know that an effective health control programme is in place.
Hierarchy of hazard control
The system is used in this industry to minimize or even eliminate exposure to hazards. The infographic below is used by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).