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Occupational medicine

Verified 31 March 2022 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

Prevention and occupational health services (SPST) have the exclusive task of preventing any harm to the health of employees as a result of their work. There are different types of medical visits.

The employers concerned by the obligation to organize or join an occupational health and prevention service are:

  • private companies
  • Industrial and Commercial Public Establishments (Epic)
  • Public administrative establishments (Epa) employing staff under private law


the individual employer must be affiliated with an occupational health and prevention service.

The obligation of medical follow-up applies to any employee with one of the following contracts:

  • Contract of employment of indefinite duration (CDI)
  • Fixed-term employment contract (fixed-term contract)
  • Temporary employment contract (temporary)
  • Fixed-term employment contract (apprenticeship contract)

This obligation also concerns the employee of the individual employer.

Please note

young people doing traineeships as part of school and university education are not affected.

Occupational health and prevention service

The occupational doctor works in an occupational health and prevention service.

Depending on the number of employees in the company, prevention and occupational health services are provided:

  • By an internal company health service
  • Or through a business-to-business health service

The tasks of prevention and health services at work are carried out by a multidisciplinary team comprising in particular occupational physicians, occupational risk prevention workers and nurses.

To obtain the contact details of the occupational physician, approach the DDETS.


The role of the occupational physician is mainly preventive.

The occupational physician shall conduct health-at-work activities to safeguard the health of workers throughout their working life.

It shall monitor the health of workers in relation to their age, risks to their safety, health and hardship at work.

It shall advise the employer, the employees and the employees' representatives on the necessary measures relating to the following:

Please note

the occupational physician does not provide care. It does not issue prescriptions or sick leave.

As part of his duties, the doctor writes a company card which is transmitted to the employer.

The occupational doctor also draws up an annual report on his activity. This report shall be forwarded in particular to the Social and Economic Committee (ESC) and the employer.

Actions and organization

The occupational doctor shall have free access to the workplace.

He shall carry out visits on his own initiative or at the request of the employer or the Social and Economic Committee (ESC).

General case

There are several types of medical visits for employees:


There are several types of medical visits for apprentices:

  • Information and prevention visit carried out within a period not exceeding 2 months from the date of hiring. Where the apprentice is a minor, or where night workHowever, this visit must take place before he is hired.
  • Medical examination of aptitude which must be carried out by the occupational doctor if the apprentice is assigned to regulated works. This examination must take place before he is hired.
  • Visits by prerecovery and resumption of work
  • Visits carried out at the request of the employer, the worker or the occupational doctor

Please note

at any time, a medical examination may be carried out by the occupational doctor to check the apprentice's ability to practice the trade he is learning. This visit is at the initiative of the apprentice (or his legal representative), the employer or the director of the Apprenticeship Training Center (ATC).


the occupational physician may postpone certain medical examinations to be carried out by 31 july 2022. Postponed visits must be held by July 31, 2023.

Physician proposals following visits

The occupational physician may propose to the employer individual measures for the accommodation, adaptation or conversion of the work station or measures for the accommodation of working time.

Where this is not possible and where the worker's state of health justifies a change of position, he shall declare the worker unfit for his post. The notice of unfitness include information on the worker's reclassification.

Within the framework of enhanced individual follow-up, the occupational physician may issue an aptitude or unfitness notice to the employee and the employer.

Consequences of visits on working time

The time spent on medical examinations and examinations, including further examinations, shall be:

  • Caught up in working hours. In this case, the employee is paid as if he had worked
  • Or paid as actual working time when such examinations cannot be carried out during working hours

The transport time and the costs incurred for these visits and examinations shall be borne by the employer.


If the employee or employer wishes to contest the opinions, proposals, written conclusions or indications based on medical evidence, he or she shall shall refer the matter to the conseil de prud'hommes. This must be done within 15 days of their notification.

The labor board may consult the labor inspector.

The occupational doctor is informed of the dispute and may be heard by the occupational inspector.

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