Republic of Ireland


1654- Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) established

1976- Faculty of Occupational Medicine established at RCPI, now has Malaysia / New Zealand / United Arab Emirates Committees

2000- 4 Year Specialist Training Scheme in Occupational Medicine established


Population : Republic of Ireland 4.2 Million /Northern Ireland 1.8 Million (Faculty is all Ireland)

Workforce:  1,8 mill
Doctors :     8,000 Republic of Ireland
Occ Physicians :86 full-time Occupational Physicians, app. 250 part time non specialists GPs with an interest in Occupational Medicine
Three Bodies  :

  • Faculty of Occupational Medicine (All Ireland& International)
  • Irish Society of Occupational Medicine (Republic of Ireland)
  • Northern Ireland Society of Occupational Medicine (Northern Ireland)

Nature of Occupational Health Services

Roughly 50% of Full Time Occupational Physicians are in the public sector and 50% are in the private sector. Large public sector organisations like the Civil Service, Health Service, Police (“Garda Siochana”) , Postal Service and Transport Service have inhouse ocupational halth services. Private sector organisations have either inhouse or outsourced occupational health services.

There are also approximately 25-30 doctors employed by the Department of Social Protection who work in disability assessment medicine.

Periodic medicals for all workers (like in France etc) are not a feature of Irish Occupational Health Services. Periodic health surveillance for noise exposure / hand-arm vibration etc & immunisation against biological hazards are required on a statutory basis.
Professional Training

Four Year Specialist Training Programme in Occupational Medicine, currently 7 trainees, funded by the public sector and training provided by the Faculty of Occupational Medicine, exit exam is Membership of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine (MFOM). Also training provided to generalists via Irish College of General Practitioners in conjunction with Faculty of Occupational Medicine, exit exam is Licentiate of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine (LFOM)

Hot Topics

New Medical Practitioners Act requires all doctors to undergo compulsory CME and Audit, 360 degree feedback may be introduced at a later date. Doctors who are not involved in specialist training or who are not on a specialist registrar are required to “align” themselves with a specialist training body who will provide non-specialist competance assurance for their area(s) of work. This will be a major body of work for the Faculty going foward with limited financial and doctor resources, all of whom are unpaid “volunteers”.