I saw a recent article that talked about the downside of their job, and it got me to thinking about the downside of occupational health work. So here are my top ten gripes of being an occupational health practitioner, although I could actually come up with a lot more.
My Top Ten – Downside of Occupational Health Work
- Workers who clutch their stomach/leg/head as I walk past them in the corridor, saying “I need a nurse” loudly
- Workers who attend for a hearing test who say “Pardon?” when I ask them their name – yawn!
- Workers who fill in their spirometry/food diary with false data just before attending their appointment; pretending they have kept it properly. I’m on to you!
- Patients who DNA (hooray!) only to reappear an hour later, meaning I have to fit them in during my lunch break or reschedule. Cruel.
- Stressed workers who insist on giving me umpteen blow-by-blow examples of how their Manager/Colleagues/Wife/Life are getting them down. I just need a summary, let’s move on.
GP’s/Specialists who take months to respond to a report request. Don’t they know I can’t deal with issues until they do?
- Workers who tell their Managers “The OH Nurse said you have to do…….. (fill in the blank)”. Prepare for a fight with an irate Manager brandishing his ego.
- Companies who insist they are doing “Wellbeing” when they give out leaflets on stress/apples/blood pressure checks. That is the easy stuff. Real wellbeing is reducing stress/bullying/workload/emails.
- Workers who arrive with a huge file under their arm and have to find the relevant page before answering my question. Far from adding clarity, I lose the will to live.
- Having to insist on my confidentiality when the whole world and his wife know the full story from the worker. Silly, but it’s Occupational Health law!
Have you got your own top ten? Let me know in the comments section.