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Occupational health nurse

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Occupational health nurses care for the health and wellbeing of people at work.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £22,000 to £41,250 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 37.5 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

You'll need:

You'll then need to take a NMC approved course in Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN). These courses take 1 year full time, or 2 years part time.

2. Skills required

You’ll need:

  • excellent communication and listening skills
  • excellent observational skills to identify potential health problems and risks
  • leadership skills to make sure instructions on health and safety issues are carried out
  • tact, understanding, patience and sensitivity
  • the ability to stay calm in an emergency
  • record-keeping and organisational skills

3. What you'll do

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • carrying out pre-employment medical checks
  • assessing and treating employees who are injured or become ill at work
  • providing counselling and support
  • giving advice on health education, health and safety and sickness absence
  • carrying out risk assessments
  • managing employee health records and statistics
  • developing and managing emergency procedures

You might also take blood samples and carry out vaccinations.

You’ll work alone or as part of a team of health and safety experts. You might work in large organisation, like a hospital, local authority, airline or retail chain, or for a private consultancy firm used by smaller employers.

4. Salary

Starter: £22,000 to £28,500

Experienced: £26,250 to £35,250 (Advisor)

Highly Experienced: £31,250 and £41,250 (Senior advisor)

Salaries in the private sector may be slightly higher than in the NHS.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You’ll usually work between 37.5 and 40 hours a week. You may work a rota or shift pattern including weekends, evenings and nights.

6. Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to a management position, leading a team of occupational health staff or running an occupational health centre.

You could become a self-employed occupational health consultant.

You could also take additional qualifications and move into nurse training.

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Last updated: 13 September 2018