Feasibility and acceptability of a workers’ health surveillance program for hospital physicians
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University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (Coronel Institute of Occupational Health, Academic Medical Center)
Martijn M. Ruitenburg   

Coronel Institute of Occupational Health, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Postbox 22700, 1100 DE Amsterdam, Netherlands
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2015;28(4):731–739
Objectives: A Workers’ Health Surveillance (WHS) program is an occupational health strategy used to detect and address the health of individual workers to improve their ability to work. This study aims to investigate the feasibility and acceptability of a new job-specific WHS for hospital physicians. Material and Methods: All hospital physicians of the general surgery, radiotherapy and obstetrics and gynecology departments from 1 academic hospital were invited to participate in the WHS by the in-company occupational health service. An occupational physician and a medical assistant were trained to use the protocol. Feasibility was operationalized as the received and delivered dose, observed success factors and potential obstacles. Acceptability was assessed by asking whether the WHS was desirable and feasible for future use and by estimating the effects on health and work ability. Written questions and semi-structured interviews were conducted with the participating physicians, 5 department managers and the 2 occupational health professionals involved in the study. Results: One-third of the hospital physicians (34%) participated in every part of the WHS. The delivered dose was 77/84 (92%). Almost all hospital physicians who received recommendations expected to adhere to this advice. The study participants appreciated the organization of the WHS. This WHS was positively graded (8 out of 10 max) in terms of acceptability. Positive effects of the WHS on health, work functioning and long-term work ability were perceived by 2/3 of the physicians. Conclusions: The new job-specific WHS for hospital physicians showed good feasibility and acceptability among participating hospital physicians, occupational health professionals and medical managers.