Vol 68, No 2 (2017)
MARITIME MEDICINE Review articles
Published online: 2017-06-27

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Decision aid for the use of additional tests during the pre-employment medical examination (PEME) of seafarers

Alf Magne Horneland1, Suzanne Louise Stannard1
Pubmed: 28660611
IMH 2017;68(2):90-98.

Abstract

No laboratory tests and imaging techniques are recommended for routine use in the ILO/IMO Guidelines on the Pre-Employment Medical Examination (PEME) of Seafarers that form the basis for statutory certification. However, they are widely used as components of the PEME protocols developed by insurers, employers and national maritime authorities in an attempt to predict and reduce the risks from illness whilst working at sea. This may be justified on scientific, safety, economic or professional grounds. We propose a rational approach for deciding if and when tests can be justified for routine use in assessing a seafarer’s fitness for work at sea. This is based on well-established methods for determining the validity of screening tests in public health as well as the seafarer demographics. We do not address the well-established use of similar tests where illness is suspected but only when they are used for routine PEME screening of all seafarers.  

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