Occupational Medicine focuses on the effects of work on health and, conversely, health on work. It encompasses the full range of workplace and environmental hazards – physical, psychosocial, biological and chemical – and how these may cause an adverse impact on health.

Specialists in Occupational Medicine are known as Occupational Physicians (Health Insurance Commission (HIC) recognised Medical Specialists).  To become an occupational physician, a medical degree must first be completed before proceeding to specialist training with admission as a Fellow to the Australasian Faculty of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (AFOEM) on successful completion of the training.

Some key competencies unique to occupational medicine include:

  • Law and medicine
  • Assessment of fitness for work
  • Development & implementation of a vocation rehabilitation program
  • Workplace Hazard Assessment including:
    • Knowledge of different hazards
    • Health effects of occupational hazards
    • Control of work-related hazards
    • Investigation of adverse event
  • Critical Appraisal of Information:
    • Evaluation diagnostic test efficacy
    • Evaluation of health intervention efficacy
    • Causation