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UK legal, insurance, employment, benefits, statutory services Advice offered by HDA Moderators relates to current UK law or guidelines

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Old 11-04-11, 07:45 PM   #1
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Default Medical at work question

Hi everyone :)

I'll try to keep this short and sweet.....

After having a temporary job for 9 months, my job got made permanent last week Woohoo!!!

But (there's always a but), as part of my job I've to have a medical My question is, how do I deal with the family history question?? I know it depends on how they phrase the question........hopefully the question will just be about high blood pressure and that kind of thing!


Nic xx
Happy happy thoughts :)
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Old 12-04-11, 02:36 PM   #2
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Default Re: Medical at work question

Would your family medical history have any impact on your ability to do your job? I very much doubt it so its very unlikely that they'll ask anything. And if they don't ask, don't tell. If they do ask, ask them what relevence it has to your position, then tell em not to be so bloomin nosey.

Well done on being made permanent BTW!
Fetchez la vache.
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Old 12-04-11, 07:27 PM   #3
Scarlett D.
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Default Re: Medical at work question

Hiya Nic, sorry have no advice for you...but good for you about the permanent position!!!

Take Care,
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Old 12-04-11, 08:46 PM   #4
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Default Re: Medical at work question

I would have a slighly different approach for you, I too would like to say dont be nosey but they might take it wrong!
Firstly I am a layman but have hired over 200 people over 25 year in positions upto Managing director, the legal position as I have been told in the past:

Under recent Employment Equality Acts, an employer is obliged to take appropriate measures to enable a person who has a disability to have access to employment, to participate or advance in employment and to undertake training, unless the measures would impose a disproportionate burden on the employer. If you attend for interview and are questioned about your medical history, any questions should be clearly and objectively linked to the specific needs of the role in question, i.e not a fishing exercise.

Similarly, any requirement to undergo a medical examination should be proportionate. For example, a medical examination is usually fair where physical ability is a relevant factor for the job. If you are asked inappropriate questions about your medical history and subsequently are not offered the job you may be able to take a claim on the grounds of discrimination.

In your case worried about family History, as you are, while there is a general requirement to act in good faith with your prospective employer there is no obligation on you to disclose medical condition that may occur within your family as it is not relevant to and does not impact on your ability to perform the job on offer.

This was expanded on in a guide for business on the type of health questions that could be asked in 2010 -"EQUALITY ACT 2010:WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW?A QUICK START GUIDE TO THE BAN ON QUESTIONS ABOUT HEALTH AND DISABILITY DURING RECRUITMENT" the crux is However, "an employer must avoid making final job award decisions that discriminate against disabled
people", but they are asking about family history so not exactly the case

I would suggest that if it arises you should ask that they be more specific in what they are interested in to help you provide a better answer If they cannot be specific then just state that there is nothing you know of in your family history that would effect your ability to carry out the job as you have been doing for the last 6 months, as I am sure you believe or you would not be doing it now.

Be positive if you truly believe you can do this job well, as I am sure you have been doing they are lucky to have you,

Good Luck!

Should at some future point an issue arrive As a layman I believe you have acted in good faith given the unjustified stigma associated with genetically inherited disease and your reasonable expectation of privacy and the unconfirmed nature of the risk! Should they not agree then they must have planned to discriminate against you not because of a disability but on the likelyhood of a disability and I am not sure that would be legaly or moraly justified. They could try and sue you which would seem expensive and fruitless unless you are a closet millionaire, or dismiss you , but on the face of it this would be discrimination.
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Old 12-04-11, 09:28 PM   #5
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Default Re: Medical at work question

Thanks for the replies It feels so good to finally have a permanent job!

I work within Project Management within a pharmaceutical manufacturing organisation so I sit on my butt all day in the office

Ta everyone!!

Nic xx
Happy happy thoughts :)
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