Deborah Peppard - HR Director
You’ve invested time and money into recruiting the best candidate for your business and you ticked all the boxes in terms of interviews, capability assessments, reference checks and you have a candidate that is an absolute standout. But how about a pre-employment medical? Can you require it as a pre-requisite to employment and what can you do with the results?
Can you require a pre-employment medical?
In short, yes you can. The best way is to have your own preferred provider whom you engage to conduct pre-employment medical assessments on your behalf. This way you can provide them with a brief on the role and physical requirements and the medical practitioner can assess against the position you are seeking to fill. Consent from the candidate is required before any examination or test is conducted so we suggest advising all potential candidates that a pre-employment medical is part of the recruitment process. If they choose to attend the appointment then they have provided consent. The results of any pre-employment medical examination are protected by privacy law and, in some jurisdictions, specific health information law.
What does pre-employment medical test include?
As an employer, you may investigate issues in relation to job applicants but only if it can be established that the information sought is related to the inherent requirements of the job. You are allowed to consider the health and safety of others when considering these job requirements. What this means is that you may address the following concerns in any pre-employment medical assessment:
Pre-employment medical checks are quite thorough and are likely to test the following:
Additionally, your industry or EBA may require or allow for any of the following to be included within the testing:
Again, as an employer you may only access information that may impact the ability of a candidate to deliver on the inherent requirements of the job and you can only use the information provided to make a genuine decision on whether any physical concerns will genuinely impact on the person’s ability to do the job.
There are a number of industries that have a statutory requirement for a pre-employment medical and these include:
Most important to note is that a pre-employment medical examination must comply with equal opportunity and privacy laws. So, consideration has to be given to the nature of the job, whether a medical condition is relevant to the performance of the job, and what the employer will do with any information obtained from a medical examination.
As with most things in life, there are always exceptions to the rule and there are instances whereby it is not unlawful to discriminate against a person based on medical information, with the main considerations involve the following:
If, as an employer, you require additional information regarding pre-employment medicals, give the HR Staff n’ Stuff team a call - we're here to help!
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