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Pre-employment medical - mental health red flag/

  • 27-08-2021 8:06am
    Registered Users Posts: 38 TLF

    Posting on behalf of a family member...

    She's been offered a job with a US MNC that requires a pre-employment medical. She hasn't had to do a work medical since she started out and since then she developed an anxiety disorder with severe panic attacks etc. She's been on medication since (for over 10 years now) and for all intents and purposes is back to normal.

    Does anyone know if this will be a red flag in the medical and potentially cost her the job? Or is she even obliged to disclose it?


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,733 ✭✭✭ OMM 0000

    If she wants the job she needs to hide it.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,981 ✭✭✭ TheChizler

    I certainly would be slow to disclose it to the hirer having been effectively ghosted by a mnc once I mentioned it to hr after receiving an offer. I'm not sure what their doctor would be able to pass on without your express permission though once they've determined you're overall healthy.

  • Registered Users Posts: 38 TLF

    Gosh ok - thank you - I wish I could say I'm surprised but I'm not really - I will tell her. Does anyone know if the medication could show up in any tests they'd do?

    PS Sorry for the multiple posts on this - didn't get any confirmation that each message had been submitted -

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,981 ✭✭✭ TheChizler

    She should technically probably disclose it to the doctor only if it's a requirement, once they've got reassurance about what they disclose to the hirer. That said they likely wouldn't pick it up unless say they're on xanax for instance and they do a drugs test for benzos, you'd want to be able to explain that in advance.

  • Registered Users Posts: 26,352 ✭✭✭✭ Dempo1

    I certainly don't think a medical from a company appointed doctor would not be permitted to carry out blood tests, this would be extraordinary. Obviously some organisations do random drug testing but I'd have to assume they are targeted specifically as in specific drugs.

    Whilst an entrance medical examination may check physical wellbeing, mobility, perhaps blood pressure etc, I'd be surprised if it went any further than that, however the caveat is the questions the assessor may ask or questionere that may need to be filled in. This is were I'd be more concerned about disclosure.

    I can't advise not to disclose the anxiety issues but would fear if not disclosed, it could have consequences long term. In essence the applicant has to ask themselves will their illness materially effect their ability to do the job they've applied for and been offered and what if any consequences could occur re non disclosure of a prescribed illness.

    Finally if the applicants own GP is requested to submit a medical report (and this mechanism is used by some potential employers), the GP is obligated to fully disclose any prescribed illness.

    All of the above IMO

    Is maith an scáthán súil charad.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,778 ✭✭✭ ari101

    Wouldn't it be discrimination if they were to suddenly withdraw an offer based on a mental health condition, assuming that is managed and doesn't interfere with her ability to do the job?

    I completely understand the fear, but equally worry that possibly not disclosing it, if it comes up in future via other means, might be seen as having lied/intentionally omitted the information, which is a no no...

    Does the nature of the role give any indication as to why the medical is necessary (eg any physical/safety to the job), which might lessen the worry.

    I'd be inclined to ask the doc what level of detail is sent back in their report anyway. And then be honest if it comes up, explaining that while they have a condition, it is managed and does not impact their ability to do the job. It has been stable for years, they have medication that successfully treats it, and it hasn't affected completion of duties in their current (hopefully similar) role to a high standard. But obviously they can only decide for themselves what they want to say that just how I might go about it for me :)

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,733 ✭✭✭ OMM 0000

    I've had a few medicals and they're generally pretty chill.

    I seriously doubt they test for anti anxiety medication.

    Can you hint at what her job is? For example, is it closer to marketing... or closer to working heavy machinery...

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,733 ✭✭✭ OMM 0000

  • Registered Users Posts: 23,904 ✭✭✭✭ Mrs OBumble

    But you must make reasonable accommodation for disability, and sometimes there's a blurred line between the two.

    If the job is stressful, or has public safety considerations, then it may be reasonable to exclude people based on previous mental health issues. The company doctor will have been briefed about what they need to look for. Tell them the truth: the last thing anyone needs is a job which makes them sick again.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,934 ✭✭✭ Augme

    The medical is to determine if a person is fit to do the job. There role is to determine if you are fit tondo the role from a medical point of view. The doctor cannot discuss your medical history or information to the employer.

    That's not to say it doesn't happen though.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 38 TLF

    Hi everyone,

    Thanks for all the help - I passed on all the info to her and she had the medical on Friday. She ended up deciding to tell them about the anxiety and medication but the doc said once it's being managed then it's no issue whatsoever and it won't be disclosed to the company. There was a blood test alright (and urine test) so she said whatever happens she's glad she was honest.

    It's just an office job but it is in a big manufacturing plant so we think it's just something they do as standard. She should hear back this week so we'll know for sure then.