Safety Critical Medical

  • Safety critical medicals in just 45 minutes
  • Combined medical assessments with drug and alcohol testing save you time and money
  • On-site medicals as well as nationwide Walk in Centres
  • Able to schedule appointments quickly to meet urgent needs
  • Fast lab confirmations available when needed: next day results if required

Why do we need safety critical medicals?

Any employee who may work in a potentially dangerous environment needs to be fit to do so.

According to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, under current legislation employers have a duty of care to prevent the ill health of their workers. It is important that workers are not suffering from medical conditions or undergoing any treatments that could cause a loss of consciousness or impairment issues (either mental or mobility-related). These issues could obviously compromise an individual’s ability to undertake their work.

However, if these employees work in a safety-critical role, it could pose a significant risk to the health and safety of the individual themselves as well as to co-workers and the general public. Therefore, to safeguard employees and the reputation of the business, regular medicals and drug and alcohol testing is recommended.

Safety critical medical assessments are in-depth medicals designed to ensure that anyone undertaking safety critical tasks is healthy and competent to perform their work.

What is a safety critical role?

Examples of safety critical roles, include:

  • Plant operators
  • Scaffolders/Riggers
  • Mechanical handling equipment operator
  • Drivers (LGV and HGV)
  • Roadside workers
  • Tunnelling workers
  • Asbestos licensed worker
  • Construction worker
  • Diver
  • Slinger/Signaller/Banksman/Traffic marshall
  • Electrician

See also Confined space and Working at heights medical assessments.

31.2 million working days were lost due to work-related ill health and non-fatal workplace injuries in 2016/17

What happens in a safety critical medical?

The tests involved in a safety critical medical can vary depending on the employee’s role (or the role that the employee is due to undertake).

However, the standard set of tests include:

  • General health questionnaire
  • Height
  • Drug and alcohol testing
  • Weight
  • Snellen (eye)
  • BMI
  • Peripheral vision
  • Blood pressure
  • Audiometry (hearing test)
  • Musculoskeletal
  • Lung function
  • Mental health
  • Urinalysis

Our medical assessments are different

AlphaBiolabs offers a combined safety critical medical assessment with drug and alcohol testing. In addition, our nationwide network of medical professionals can visit a convenient location (whether work or home) to undertake the combined medical assessments for a variety of industries. We also have unique Walk in Centres across the UK, which offer dedicated facilities in-house. Our staff all follow full chain of custody procedures to ensure sample integrity.

All services are delivered to required industry standards and we are covered by the ISO 9001 (2015) quality management system. All of our medical assessments are tailored to your workplace sector and individual needs.

Safety critical medicals in just 45 minutes

Drug and alcohol testing

The statistics are worrying: drug and alcohol misuse is involved in up to 60% of all fatal work-related accidents. It is also responsible for millions of lost work days every year.

Regular drug and alcohol testing:

  • increases productivity, decreases costs and helps maintain the reputation of a company
  • means that a business is operating lawfully to ensure the safety of employees and the general public

AlphaBiolabs has been providing professional, confidential and comprehensive workplace drug and alcohol testing services for 15 years. Our UK-based laboratory produces legally defensible results that protect your business should an employee formally dispute them for any reason.

Alcohol testing

The breathalysers that our sample collectors use to test for alcohol in breath are approved by the Home Office under the Road Traffic Act 1988, Transport & Works Act 1992 and Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003. The breath alcohol concentration (BAC) is given as a digital readout, which shows the level of alcohol in the breath at the time the test was taken.

Drug testing

A urine screening test is used to determine whether someone is misusing drugs by taking a sample of their urine and analysing it for particular substances. This form of testing can give an immediate negative result, which may mean that no further action is necessary. A non-negative result may require confirmation testing from the laboratory in order to determine exactly what substance was taken and in what quantities. Should lab confirmation be needed, AlphaBiolabs is proud to provide the fastest results, next day if required.

If necessary, further testing services can be undertaken, such as hair strand tests, to establish a history of drug use.

Frequently Asked Questions

The requirements for safety critical medical assessments are:

  • People under the age of 54 years old have to have a medical every 3 years
  • People aged between 55–65 years have to have a medical every 2 years
  • People over 65 years of age have to have a medical annually

A standard medical assessment takes around 45 minutes. However, further time may need to be added for additional testing requirements.

Bring a form of identification (Passport or Driver’s licence) and any information about medication you may be taking.

A breath and urine test will be able to provide instant results, and if negative, no further action may be needed. If confirmatory analysis is needed by the laboratory, results will usually be made available within 3 days (dependent on the substance being investigated). Next day results are also available when required.

The medical professional undertaking your test will typically report one of the following outcomes back to the employer:

  • Fit
  • Unfit
  • Fit with restrictions

Where applicable, AlphaBiolabs will upload results to the relevant industry portals, such as Sentinel. Results can also be referred to, or discussed with, a GP for a further fee.

For further information or to order an assessment please call 0333 600 1300 or email

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