Occupational health services

Occupational health services are concerned with the relationship between work and the given professional activity as well as its impact on human beings, their health and diseases. The goal of occupational health services is, as far as possible, to maintain and promote workers’ physical, mental and social wellbeing in companies, irrespective of the type of work.

The legal provisions can be found in the Swiss Code of Obligations (CO, SR 220, Employers’ obligations) and the Employment Act (EmpA, SR 822.11). The Ordinance of 19 December 1983 on the Prevention of Accidents and Occupational Diseases (APO, SR 832.30) and, in practical terms, MSST Directive 6508 require that occupational health officers and other specialists in safety at the workplace be called upon if this is required to protect workers’ health and safety.

For certain occupations, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) may decide that the apprenticeship contract can only be approved if it is accompanied by a medical certificate attesting to the fact that the person is capable of working in the chosen occupation. More information can be obtained from the corresponding professional organisations and cantonal authorities.