Health Surveillance for Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS)

Hand arm vibration screening

The purpose of HAVS health surveillance is to:

  • Identify anyone exposed or about to be exposed to hand-arm vibration who may be at particular risk, for example people with blood circulatory diseases such as Raynaud’s Disease
  • Identify any vibration-related disease at an early stage in employees regularly exposed to hand arm vibration and advise you on management
  • Assisting you prevent HAVS disease progression and eventual disability
  • Assisting employees staying in employment
  • Check the effectiveness of your vibration control measures

LEVEL 1 : Pre employment assessment

  • Completion of self-assessment questionnaire before exposure begins
  • Questionnaire assessed by responsible person and or occupational health nurse advisor
  • Those with possible symptoms will be referred to a specialist occupational health advisor (Level 3) and/or a specialist medical practitioner (Level 4).

LEVEL 2 : Routine annual screening

  • Completion of a self-assessment questionnaire
  • Questionnaire to be assessed by a responsible person
  • Those with possible symptoms to be referred to a specialist occupational health advisor (Level 3) and/or specialist medical practitioner (Level 4)
  • If symptoms are reported at any time they must be referred and not delayed until annual screening
  • No symptoms after 3 years must be referred for clinical assessment (Level 3)

LEVEL 3 : Clinical assessment

  • Clinical assessment by a specialist occupational health advisor for the vascular (circulatory) & neurological (nerve) function of the arm, wrist, hand and fingers: specific tests may include grip strength, Purdue pegboard (assess speed and manual dexterity) and monofilaments (assess sensory perception of the fingers)
  • Referral to a specialist Doctor (Level 4) where symptoms are reported or clinical effects found

LEVEL 4 : Formal diagnosis

  • Formal diagnosis for reporting under RIDDOR by a specialist medical practitioner
  • Fitness for work issues/case management
  • Possible referral for standardised testing and/or other specialist tests may be required

LEVEL 5 : Standardised tests

  • In addition to clinical findings, standardised testing can be conducted if requested by a specialist medical practitioner
  • Diagnosis still depends on the judgement of a specialist medical practitioner (Level 4)

If you would like further information on Hand Arm Vibration Screening please contact Spirit Occupational Health Service.