Force Order 97/14 announced the implementation of yearly medicals for MDP and declared that it had the full support of the DPF. This Circular is published to articulate the DPF position so that there is no misunderstanding of where we are at and the decisions made to date.
In June 2014 a copy of the FO was passed to the National Officers for approval. Although we had some minor issues (subsequently resolved) we were content for the FO to be published. However, at that particular time, the details surrounding the yearly medicals had still to be determined and negotiations ensued with OH Assist to clarify the particulars of the contract.
We are aware of the fears of some members, regards, medical confidentiality but have received assurances that medical information will be tightly controlled by OH Assist. DPF are of the opinion that yearly medicals are safety issues and are content for them to be conducted – indeed we have pursued the Force for some time as they had failed to meet their safety requirements. However, what does require clarification is how the approvals for access to medical information will be utilised and we have discussed and agreed this with the Force. Members are therefore advised that the following will protect their personal privacy:
Where a member is yet to submit their medical questionnaire, to ensure that it is annotated to the effect “only access to any condition identified as a direct result of the medical that affects my ability to act as a police officer” and contact their GP to ensure they comply.
Where a member has already submitted a questionnaire and provided that approval, to contact OH Assist to include the caveat and also contact their GP to ensure they comply.
As previously articulated, we are content that yearly medicals are a necessity and not a breach of your conditions of service but we nevertheless are aware of your concerns and hope the publication of this Circular goes some way to alleviating your fears.