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Health monitoring

The Work Health and Safety Regulations 2011 require persons conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) to monitor the health of workers carrying out certain types of work that include asbestos, hazardous chemicals and lead.A copy of the health monitoring report must be given to Comcare when the report contains:

  • Any advice that test results indicate the worker may have contracted a disease, injury or illness out of carrying out the work (Regulation 376).
  • A recommendation that the PCBU take remedial measures, including whether the worker can continue to carry out the work (Regulation 376).
  • In the case of lead risk work, test results that indicate the worker has exceeded relevant blood lead levels for that person (Regulation 415).

Risk

If unmonitored, routine exposure to hazardous substances can cause severe health issues including disease, injury or illness.

Remedy

Depending on the context and conditions, a remedy may include:

  • identifying the hazardous substance
  • providing workers at risk of exposure with safety data sheets
  • providing training to workers on the safe handling of the substance
  • providing adequate personal protective equipment to workers at risk of exposure
  • providing health monitoring to workers at risk of exposure.

Resources

How to submit the report to Comcare

You can submit a copy of the report to Comcare by fax or email:

Requirements

The PCBU must give a copy of the health monitoring report to Comcare as soon as practicable after receiving it.

What does 'as soon as practicable' mean?

  • Comcare will adopt a common-sense approach to working out whether the PCBU has given a copy of a health monitoring report to Comcare as soon as practicable after receiving the report.
  • Comcare needs to be satisfied the PCBU has given the report as soon as the particular circumstances permit.
  • In general, Comcare considers that the PCBU obtains a health monitoring report at the time that any of the PCBU’s workers in supervisory or managerial roles receive the original or a copy of the report.

The WHS Regulations impose strict timeframes for giving health monitoring reports to Comcare. Penalties of up to $30 000 apply.
If you are unsure about whether or how to give a health monitoring report to Comcare you should contact Comcare's WHS Help Desk by e-mailing WHS.Help@Comcare.gov.au or calling 1300 366 979 to get advice.

Page last updated: 01 Sep 2016