Lung Function Test – Spirometry

Lung Function Assessment

There is a duty for employers to carry out risk assessments in order to identify any hazardous substance that an employee may breathe in while at work – and then do something about it. Health surveillance is not to be used as an alternative to proper controls to exposure.

spirometry, lung function testing

What is Spirometry?
Spirometry is carried out to comply with the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 (COSHH).

It allows baseline and follow up measurements of lung function to be recorded. Any actions required as a result will be reported to management.

For most organisations, the most cost effective method of complying is to have the testing carried out on site, minimising any disruption and costs.

Key Benefits

  • On site testing reduces disruption and costs
  • Enables you to comply with the regulations
  • Reduces your risk of being sued for work related respiratory problems.
  • Can reduce your employers liability insurance
  • Identifies high risk factor employees or new employees joining the company with pre-existing conditions.
  • Increases worker awareness of the risks and improve attitudes and behaviour.
  • Promotes good employment relations

Substances causing Occupational Lung Disease include:

  • Isocyanates (e.g. two-pack paint sprays)
  • Flour Dust
  • Grain Dust
  • Gluteraldehyde
  • Wood Dust (especially hardwood)
  • Latex (powdered natural rubber latex gloves)
  • Rosin-cored solder fume
  • Laboratory animals and insects
  • Metal Plating Processes
  • Glues
  • Polyurethane Resins
  • Silica Dust
  • Welding Fumes

Consult each Material Safety Data Sheet or HSE document EH40 for full list.

Occupations most at risk include:

  • Bakeries and food production
  • Painters
  • Healthcare services
  • Repairers (inc. electronics)
  • Woodworkers (inc. forestry)
  • Welders
  • Cleaning Services
  • Beauty Services
  • Floristry

What We Do
We allow around 15 minutes per test.

  • We scrutinise a pre-test questionnaire to help identify previous and current factors which may impact on the test results including medical conditions and former work history.
  • We bring our computerised spirometry equipment to test those identified to be at risk
  • The results of the test are explained to the employee at the time and a copy shown to them.
  • Advice is given on the use of protective equipment and the danger of respiratory sensitizers.
  • If the test results indicate, we will refer the employee for further medical advice.

Test Frequency
The frequency of tests depends on a number of factors. Those staff identified as working with respiratory sensitizers or they have other determining factors;

  • New starters  – should be tested at commencement of employment, six weeks after starting, three months after starting and twelve months after starting.
  • Then Annually for two years. If no abnormalities are identified;
  • Every three years thereafter.

If an employee starts using a new respiratory sensitiser, testing should be carried out and monitored as above.

Some companies choose to test everyone every year or every two years and this is an acceptable approach to take if that is the easiest way to manage it.

Why Use Us?

  • We offer a 24 hour service and test at the time to suit you, including evenings, nights, bank holidays and weekends at no extra cost.
  • We provide a personal service with one contact for the whole project
  • We provide a clear fixed price quotation so you are in control of costs.
  • We have more than twenty years experience in Occupational Health projects
  • We will give you a completely professional service.