Wednesday, January 14, 2015

How to Prepare for a Pre-Employment Medical exam for Abroad Candidate...

A good employer is concerned with the welfare of its employees. That's why most companies require prospective employees to undergo a pre-employment medical examination. It is important for employers to know if potential employees are fit for the job. Otherwise, the workplace may pose additional health hazards and risks to employees who already have medical issues.

A medical examination is a vital step towards a possible job placement abroad.

How to Prepare for a Pre-Employment Medical exam


All People who are bound for overseas deployment need to go through a medical exam procedure. This is to ensure that the hired worker is in good physical condition and is not suffering from any medical illness.

Listed below are some important information about this pre-employment requirement that all aspiring people should be aware of:

A medical examination should only be required to applicants who already received an employment offer. Only the selected applicants will undergo a medical examination so it should not be required at the start of one's application. Recruiters who initially refer a jobseeker to a medical clinic for examination may be a sign of an illegal recruiter or a recruitment activity.

Food Handler
Food handler is a person involved in the processing production, manufacturing, packaging, preparation, sale, or serving of any food stuff including water and beverages.Food handlers fail to report their manager immediately if they have an illness that is likely to be passed on through food or if they have certain medical conditions that could lead to this.

The following infections can be spread by food handlers
E.coli (causing watery diarrhea)
Verocytotoxin-producing Escherichia coli (E. coli)(causing bloody diarrhea)
Salmonella typhi and Salmonella paratyphi A, B or C (Enteric / typhoid fever)
Shigella (causing dysentery)
Hepatitis A (Hepatitis)
Staphylococcal food poisoning (vomiting and fever)
Parasitic infections like E.histolytica (causing amoebic dysentry), Giardia lamblia (causing giardiasis)

Lists of pre-employment tests for food handlers :
  • CBC, ESR
  • Hb
  • Stool Routine
  • Urine Routine
  • Fasting Sugar
  • Blood Group
  • Stool Culture
  • Widal Test
  • HIV, HbsAg
  • X-Ray Chest
  • Lists of test to be done in persons with open sores, ulcers, pustules :
  • PUS Culture
  • Nasal Swabs


Other diseases that need to be checked prior to employment and later at 6 months interval are :

Chest and respiratory diseases like TB which could pose a hazard to co-worker
Blood-Borne Infections like HIV, Hepatitis B

Returning to work after an illness
In most cases of infection, bacteria and viruses can still be found in someone's faeces after symptoms stop. It is therefore important that managers continue to exclude food handlers for a period of time after this. 48 hours is the recommended length of time.

Extra care should be taken over personal hygiene practices on return to work though, especially hand washing.

Lists of test to be done in case of person returning from a diarrhea illness :
  • Stool Routine
  • Stool Culture (3 consecutive stool samples taken 48 hours apart in case of cholera, typhoid and dysentery should be tested negative)
  • Widal Test
  • HAV Test



According to GAMCA, the following is the list of diseases that classify applicants in unfit to work status.
Infectious category: HIV/AIDS reactive, Hepatitis B surface antigen, HCV reactive,
Microfilaria positive and malaria blood film positive, known leprosy patients,Tuberculosis - any type, X-ray showing active PTB, past evidence of PTB or healed, Pulmonary scar, including minimum fibrosis, calcification (granuloma) pleural thickening, pleural effusion, tuberculosis lymphadenitis, VDRL/TPHA reactive

Noninfectious category: Chronic renal failure, Chronic hepatitis failure, Congestive heart failure, Hypertension, Diabetes mellitus, known cases of cancer, Psychiatric disease and neurological disorders, Physical disabilities, i.e. color blindness, deafness
Pre employment medical exam may include physical exams and laboratory tests.  Doctors also ask Candidates to answer a questionnaire regarding their medical history. Sometimes, they tend to fill up the form while interviewing the Candidate.  In such cases, Candidates should be honest in answering all questions for lying may give consequences in the future.

To ensure passing, Candidates should do this before and on the day of the medical exam.
• Candidates should come early to the accredited clinic because some applied a first come first serve basis rule.  Coming early will make you finish the exam early too.  Unless there would be unexpected problems.
•   If possible, Candidates should schedule their exam when they would be relaxed so it won’t affect the BP and pulse readings.
• Candidates should wear modest, supportive underwear.
•  If ever a fitness test is required, the candidate can wear appropriate exercise clothing and shoes he’ll be comfortable with.
• Avoid smoking for 24 hours before the medical exam. This will ensure that Candidates will perform better if ever a lung function test is to be done.
• Candidate should take a good night sleep before the examination to ensure that you are completely rested.
• Avoid listening to loud music, especially if you listen with your headphones. Such practice will make acandidate to have temporary hearing difficulties that could lead to not passing the medical exam.
• Do not drink coffee, tea or caffeinated soft drinks at least 8 to 12 hours before your examination.
• Candidate should also avoid drinking alcoholic beverages and eating fatty foods a week or more before the examination schedule because these may cause a rise in the liver function tests once required.
Limit salt intake like canned goods and preserved foods at least 48 hours before the exam.
• Candidate should also avoid doing exercise or physical activities that would be a very exhausting day or two before the exam for this can be raise some laboratory results.
The candidate must remember that it is important not to stress themselves over these pre-employment medical exams because the result will never be in their control.  Candidate should just maintain a positive outlook and to follow the guides given to be well-prepared.

According to GAMCA, the following is the list of diseases that classifies applicants in unfit to work status.
Infectious category: HIV/AIDS reactive, Hepatitis B surface antigen, HCV reactive,
Microfilaria positive and malaria blood film positive, known leprosy patients,
Tuberculosis - any type, X-ray showing active PTB, past evidence of PTB or healed, Pulmonary scar, including minimum fibrosis, calcification (granuloma) pleural thickening, pleural effusion, tuberculosis lymphadenitis, VDRL/TPHA reactive

Non-infectious category: Chronic renal failure, Chronic hepatitis failure, Congestive heart failure, Hypertension, Diabetes mellitus, known cases of cancer, Psychiatric disease and neurological disorders, Physical disabilities, i.e. color blindness, deafness

Important Reminders..

  • The pre-employment medical exam is not a trap designed so you fail the job requirements. You should not hesitate to disclose any existing physical condition. Do not use illegal and prohibited drugs. If you are taking medication, tell the medical staff right away because it will also be detected during the test.

The job offer may be canceled because of the medical result. Hired applicants should first wait for a clear medical exam result before celebrating. This is because the job offer can still be cancelled or delayed if the result shows that the worker is not in good health condition.

The certificate is only valid up to 3 months. For the reason that the medical exam is only valid for 90 days, hired applicants with a "fit to work" medical certificate should be able to leave the country within three months after the medical procedures. The worker will be required to repeat the medical exams upon the expiration of the certificate.


Medical exam fees. The fees for the medical procedures are usually shouldered by the applicants. However, in cases when the deployment of the worker is delayed and the medical certificate expires, the fees for the repeat medical exams should be paid by the agency.


The medical tests vary per country. The requirement for the medical examination depends upon the specifications and requirements of your host country. For example, there is the Gulf Cooperation Council(GCC)-Accredited Medical Clinics Association or GAMCA that governed the medical exams of foreign workers in the following countries: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).


Prepared & Collection by:M.Ajmal Khan.

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