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Viimati uuendatud: 24.02.2017

General Occupational Health Care and Safety Organization for the Remotely Working Employee and Their Work

The fulfilment of Occupational Health Care and Safety Act (hereinafter OHCSA) requirements (e.g. conducting the risk assessment) when the employee works from home, is not legally regulated. Legislation sees the workplace as the workplace located on the premises of the self-employed person or company, national or local institution, non-governmental unit or foundation (hereinafter: company); or its’ surroundings and other workplaces that the employee has access to while working, or where they work on the employer’s permission or organization (OHCSA §4 s 1).

Home and its furniture is up to the employee to decide and they do not have to allow any interventions. However, the employer’s responsibility emanating from the OHCSA to guarantee the occupational health care and safety during all work-related activities should be guaranteed.

As working from home is on mutual agreement between the employer and employee, it should also be considered whether the employee works in surroundings safe to their health. For instance, it is relevant to instruct also people working from home how must the computer workplace be set up and when to take breaks.

When carrying out risk assessment, it is best if the assessor checks the workplace at the employee’s home and assesses likely risks. If the risk assessment determines that the chair used for working is not stable, the seat height and backrest position not adjustable, the employer and employee must discuss how to use an appropriate chair.

Organizing medical checks to the employees does not depend on whether the employee works at home or office. The medical check is based on the time worked at a display.

According to §3 section 5 of the Regulation No. 362 by the Government of the Republic “Occupational Health and Safety Requirements for Work with Display Screen Equipment”, the employer must organize a health check to employee, who works at least half the time at a display, comprising:

  1.  Eyes and eyesight check, observing the term appointed by the occupational health doctor or eye specialist to the specific employee; but not less than once in three years, or at the employee’s request if eyesight problems have occurred when working with a display screen;
  2. Musculature and skeleton check, primarily to discover discomforts related to the forced position; not less than once in three years, or at the employee’s request if problems have occurred when working with a display screen.

In the case of an occupational accident, or the employee is diagnosed with a work-related illness, it is not so much connected to the working location as the work task execution, and the employer is obliged to register and investigate also these cases. Certainly and similarly to workplace accidents it must be evaluated what was the employee doing when the accident happened, or what were the working conditions that led to the work-related illness.

Compiled by: Silja Soon, Head of Occupational Health Inspection Service, Labour Inspectorate

Külastusi 2224, sellel kuul 2224

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