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This page contains frequently asked questions on diseases and health.
Conscientious use of standard precautions will minimise the risk of workers acquiring infections and transferring infections between persons. Some infections may pose an increased risk for pregnant workers and immunosuppressed individuals, and additional measures may be needed for some diseases requiring isolation. Standard precautions include:
Under OHS legislation, employees have an obligation to cooperate with their employer to help the employer comply with occupational health and safety obligations, and to ensure the health and safety of others in the workplace who may be affected by the employee’s acts or omissions. Workers may be required to notify their employer of incidents where they may expose (or have potentially exposed) a fellow worker or member of the public to certain diseases, such as HIV or Hepatitis B or C. Notification of such incidents is subject to privacy and discrimination legislation.
A list of diseases that employers are required to notify to the WorkSafe Commissioner is provided in the Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996.
If you have a short-term infectious illness, speak with your doctor about the type of work you do, and whether you need to stay home until recovered to avoid infecting others.
Where there is a high risk of contracting hepatitis B at work, a vaccination protocol should be included in a policy for prevention and control of infectious disease for the workplace and where needed, vaccination should be available free of charge. Employees should always be given comprehensive information regarding hepatitis B and vaccination and advised to discuss vaccinations with a medical practitioner.
The Department of Health provides guidelines on what to do if used syringes are found.
Notify your employer if you find used syringes at your workplace. Your employer should provide information to workers and have a policy that outlines the procedure to be followed.
No, HIV cannot be transmitted from contact with: