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Quoting both dictionary definitions and statuory requirements, Koh
and Aw's education article  limits the definition of occupational
"health surveillance" to the detection of adverse health effects resulting
from occupational exposures. In doing so, they exclude international and
national requirements for occupational health and medical surveillance to
assess fitness for work.
Looking at th...
Looking at the hazard of ionizing radiation, international
recommendations, European Directives  and UK National Legislation 
all identify a requirement for surveillance where the primary purpose is
an assessment of the individual's fitness for post. Similarly, in
considering surveillance of divers, a key element of requirements is an
assessment of fitness for work. On a more general level, both in the
public and in the occupational setting systems of health surveillance
exist for drivers where it is clearly nonsense to suggest that this is
aimed at the detection of adverse effects resulting from time behind the
wheel. It is therefore suggested that the authors' conclusion needs to be
expanded to identify a requirement for periodic examination of
individuals, not only to detect reversible ill health, but also to assess
fitness for work.
(1) Koh D, Aw T-C. Surveillance in occupational health. Occup Environ Med
(2) Recommendations of the International Commission on Radiation Protection
publication 60: 1992
(3) Basic safety standards for the health protection of the general public
and workers against the dangers of ionising radiation European Union
Counsel directive 1996/29/EURATOM 13th May 1996
(4) The Ionising Radiations Regulations 1999 (UK statutory instrument).