SWITZERLAND: audiomobiles for preventive hearing examinations

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By means of buses equipped with professional audiometry techniques, the audiomobiles, Suva regularly carries out preventive hearing examinations in companies. This makes it possible to detect possible hearing impairments in workers before they even feel the symptoms.

Only employees under 40 years of age who are exposed to a LEX noise level of 85 dB(A) or more in the course of their work are subject to these examinations. If disturbances are detected, Suva can follow up beyond the age of 40.

Employers are obliged to register the persons concerned for these examinations and to allow them to attend. They then receive a report indicating whether any of them need to be better protected against noise. Workers who are found to be affected are then referred to an ENT specialist. If there is a risk of incipient deafness, the person receives a letter requiring the systematic wearing of hearing protectors (conditional fitness decision) or even a specific type of hearing protector. In rare cases, Suva may prohibit the person from carrying out tasks involving exposure to noise that is hazardous to hearing (decision of unfitness).

If several employees in a company are affected, Suva noise specialists will analyse the workplace and the noise protection measures in place on site.

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