Occupational health care

Occupational health care

There must be an unambiguous agreement on the occupational health care agreed upon with the employer.

Under the Act of Posting Workers, the Occupational Health Care Act applies also to posted workers. Therefore a foreign employer is required to provide his employees with statutory occupational health care for the duration of those employees’ work in Finland.

The Occupational Health Care Act provides provisions on the employer’s responsibility to provide occupational health care and on the content and implementation of occupational health care. The basic principle in occupational health care legislation is that the employer should use the expertise of occupational health care professionals in fulfilling the employer’s obligations under the Occupational Health Care Act.

The employer must sign a written service agreement with the occupational health care service provider and draw up a plan detailing how the services are to be implemented. The foundation of occupational health care is the workplace survey, which the occupational health care service provider performs and writes up in a report. Matters emerging in the workplace survey must be taken into account when drafting and updating the occupational health care plan. The employer must keep the service agreement for occupational health care and the report compiled on the basis of the workplace survey in a place at the workplace where all the employees can read them.

The principal rule is that the employer must provide their employees with occupational health care in Finland, regardless of the size of the workplace or the duration of the work. This means that this obligation exists even if the duration of the work is very short. A similar service arranged in the country of origin cannot replace occupational health care organised in Finland, because the conditions of the workplace, the workplace survey performed there and the occupational health care plan drafted on the basis of the plan play a fundamental role in determining the scope of the occupational health care required.

In practice, the occupational safety and health authorities have accepted arrangements where the client organises occupational health care for the employees of a foreign subcontractor or foreign agency workers, provided that the client can show an agreement to this effect between the client and the employer of the employees concerned.

Further information: Occupational health and accidents.