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Decision details

Occupational Health Provision

Decision Maker: Executive Director, Resources

Decision status: Recommendations Approved


To gain approval for the commissioning of an Occupational Health (including Health Surveillance) service contract and an Employee Assistance Programme services contract via a framework agreement at the expiry of the current contract in June 2023.



That the Executive Director Resources:


(1)        Approves the commissioning of the Occupational Health service by way of service contract with a term of 4 years and estimated value of £1.2 million, as set out in the report; and


(2)        Approves the commissioning of the Employee Assistance Programme by way of a service contract with a term of 4 years and an estimated value of £250,000, as set out in the report.


Reasons for the decision:

To ensure continued access to an Occupational Health service and Employee Assistance Programme that supports the Councils employees and members health and wellbeing needs.


To minimise the risks that were identified during the consideration of alternative options.

Alternative options considered:

(1)      In addition to the proposal the following option was considered during the early parts of the Trade Union engagement phase regarding the future provision of Occupational Health services.


(2)      To bring services in-house at the expiry of the contract – consideration has been given as to whether the service or parts of the service were to be brought back in-house. Several issues make this option challenging and costly including.

·        Cost and difficulty of recruitment to OH roles

·        Overall management of a new specialist function.

·        The service must be under the clinical direction of a registered medical practitioner who is a member of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine and has appropriate experience

·        Ongoing cost of Occupational Health (OH) Specialist technicians & nurses, OH Physician, Mental Health/psychological & trauma specialists, MSK specialist, Appointed Doctor Asbestos Medicals, Physiotherapists and Administrators

·        Ongoing Continuous Professional Development time/costs

·        SCC must meet the standards for a Safe Efficient Quality Occupational Health Service (SEQOHS), published by the Faculty of Occupational Medicine (FOM) to ensure Clinical Governance

·        Set up and maintenance of rooms and equipment to OH standards of privacy and care

·        Purchase of an OH referral and record keeping system

·        Provision of a 24/7, 365 days a year Employee Assistance Programme – this element could be purchased separately

·        Engagement of Agency staff to act as standby to ensure an acceptable level of resilience


(3)      In general, it was considered that these issues are currently insurmountable, although this does not preclude giving further consideration to some of the services being delivered in-house in the future or by splitting provision between different providers of OH services and EAP services.


(4)      An initial assessment of what services should be delivered by an OH provider and what services can be provided in-house has been completed

Publication date: 11/11/2022

Date of decision: 10/11/2022

Accompanying Documents: