Delivery of health surveillance for hand–arm vibration in the West Midlands

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BackgroundConcerns about provider competence and quality of hand–arm vibrations (HAVs) health surveillance programmes were identified by Health & Safety Executive (HSE) inspectors.AimsTo evaluate health surveillance programmes and compare them with published HSE guidance. To identify deficiencies and areas for improvement in the health surveillance programmes.MethodsA proforma was developed for the study and used on a sample of 10 local occupational health providers.ResultsAll 10 organizations were aware of current HSE guidance for health surveillance for HAVs but only a minority (30%) were following it. Occupational health provider training, written procedures and health surveillance delivery were all identified as areas requiring improvement.ConclusionsThe majority of organizations were not following HSE guidance. Occupational health providers undertaking health surveillance for HAV require specific training.

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