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August/September 2017 (vol. 14/2)
An online poll found little support for integrating OH fully into the NHS, but is there another way to improve access to OH services for the millions of UK workers without workplace provision?
ARGUABLY, it was a mistake to exclude occupational health (OH) from the NHS when it was formed in 1948, but that does not mean it would be right to integrate it now. An overwhelming majority (76%) of respondents to our Tea-breaker poll (pp.6–7) disagreed that OH should be fully integrated into the NHS, a proposition put forward in a BMJ editorial by OH physician Ian Torrance and Faculty of Occupational Medicine president Richard Heron1. If the proposal cannot gain support in a poll of the OH community, it seems unlikely it could gain traction with the government, which would have to pay for it.
John Ballard, editor
Author: Ballard J
Occupational Health at Work August/September 2017 (vol. 14/2) pp03