Learning objectives for medical undergraduates

Based on recommendations published in 1998 by the Faculty of Occupational Medicine of the Royal College of Physicians of London, by the end of undergraduate training medical students should:

  1. Appreciate the role of occupational or environmental factors in disease.
  2. Be able to define the major occupational and environmental health risks in the UK in terms of clinical features, epidemiology and the exposures that determine these risks.
  3. Be able to take a good occupational history and assess the clinical relevance of workplace and environmental exposures
  4. Be able to discuss the concepts of occupational and environmental epidemiology, and have an awareness of how to assess the importance of ‘new’ or changing risks to human health from environmental or occupational factors.
  5. Have a basic understanding of the key aspects of biological and environmental monitoring of workplace and environmental hazards and of the measures that can be taken to control these hazards.
  6. Have knowledge of the roles of regulatory organisations, industrial and commercial interests and older groups in relation to the management of risks to human health from environmental/occupational factors.
  7. Be able to outline the functions of occupational physicians and their relationship to other members of the occupational health team, as well as their external relationships with GPs, hospital consultants, the Health and Safety Executive, Environmental Health Officers, etc.
  8. Understand how the workplace might be modified to support less fit or disabled people, and how to rehabilitate patients back to work.
  9. Have accepted their responsibilities as health care workers towards their own health and safety at work, as well as that of their colleagues and other third parties.
  10. Have knowledge of some of the main sources of information on occupational and environmental health.

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