Does having sleep apnea count against you in a medical for conductor?

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Miffa

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I have sleep apnea. It’s under control with a CPAP machine. But does it count against you in the medical or the company’s decision to employ you once they find out?
 
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Stigy

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I have sleep apnea. It’s under control with a CPAP machine. But does it count against you in the medical or the company’s decision to employ you once they find out?
I read that as a ‘CRAP’ machine :D

I think if it’s controlled it’s okay? You’ll have to declare it obviously, and as with everything else, it’ll be dealt with on an individual basis.
 

Miffa

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I read that as a ‘CRAP’ machine :D

I think if it’s controlled it’s okay? You’ll have to declare it obviously, and as with everything else, it’ll be dealt with on an individual basis.
Thanks for the response. Not sure it can be dealt with on an individual basis. Companies either have a policy on it or they don’t. Can’t accept 1 person but not another, there needs to be consistency. But I could be wrong?
 

DorkingMain

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Generally it's about the impact a condition has or is likely to have, rather than what specific condition it is.
 

Stigy

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Thanks for the response. Not sure it can be dealt with on an individual basis. Companies either have a policy on it or they don’t. Can’t accept 1 person but not another, there needs to be consistency. But I could be wrong?
If you have all the answers, why the need for a thread?

Companies can and do deal with different conditions on their own merits as no two people are the same usually. Your idea of under control might not be as definitive as theirs, for example.
 

Miffa

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Specifically, do you have 'central sleep apnea' or 'obstructive sleep apnea'?
It is obstructive apnea. CPAP wasn’t the last resort, it was the only option given. My sleep patterns are good and the apnea episodes are well under control (the machine links to a iPhone app which shows the results everyday and passes them direct to the apnea team at the hospital - I have to do this as I’m a bus driver at the moment and it’s a DVLA requirement)
 

221129

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As long as it is controlled and it is discussed at your medical then you should be fine. The TOC OccHealth might want to write to your specialist just to be safe.
 

Miffa

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If you have all the answers, why the need for a thread?

Companies can and do deal with different conditions on their own merits as no two people are the same usually. Your idea of under control might not be as definitive as theirs, for example.
I don’t have the answers, I was just being logical. I was hoping there maybe someone on here who has first hand experience of being on the job but having apnea.
 

LowLevel

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We have drivers with sleep apnea. There was a bit of a surge in diagnoses with drivers over a certain neck collar size all being sent for testing following a direction from the occupational health doctor. Those who came back with a diagnosis were off safety critical duties for quite a considerable amount of time for monitoring to ensure the condition was under control (over 6 months in one
case). Standards for guards tend to be lower.

So yes, it's perfectly possible, I have no idea whether it would impact new recruits though as everyone I know was diagnosed while already working.
 

Stigy

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We have drivers with sleep apnea. There was a bit of a surge in diagnoses with drivers over a certain neck collar size all being sent for testing following a direction from the occupational health doctor. Those who came back with a diagnosis were off safety critical duties for quite a considerable amount of time for monitoring to ensure the condition was under control (over 6 months in one
case). Standards for guards tend to be lower.

So yes, it's perfectly possible, I have no idea whether it would impact new recruits though as everyone I know was diagnosed while already working.

Certainly at GWR, part of our medical is a questionnaire which contains tick boxes about collar size and asks specifically about Sleep Apnea. I reckon it’s probably more common than a lot of people think, it’s just that it’s largely undiagnosed.

I don’t have the answers, I was just being logical. I was hoping there maybe someone on here who has first hand experience of being on the job but having apnea.
There’s rarely a “one size fits all” for these things. It’s like many other conditions, whereby the only real way to give an applicant/patient a definitive answer is to have a good old fashioned sit down consultation with the Doc at the medical (which I’d imagine most TOCs do - Again, GWR certainly do and I’d imagine it’s fairly standard across the board).
 

Miffa

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Thank you
Certainly at GWR, part of our medical is a questionnaire which contains tick boxes about collar size and asks specifically about Sleep Apnea. I reckon it’s probably more common than a lot of people think, it’s just that it’s largely undiagnosed.


There’s rarely a “one size fits all” for these things. It’s like many other conditions, whereby the only real way to give an applicant/patient a definitive answer is to have a good old fashioned sit down consultation with the Doc at the medical (which I’d imagine most TOCs do - Again, GWR certainly do and I’d imagine it’s fairly standard across the board).
thanks for that, it makes sense. I was diagnosed about a year ago. I never knew I had it until then. The app that’s linked to the machine (and automatically sends the info to the hospital apnea clinic I’m under) has about 12 months of readings on it except for a 2 week period about 2 months ago when a piece of the equipment broke and I had to wait for the a replacement part. So I hope that being able to show this to the medic should be enough.

my only concern is if they send that as part of the report to HR and they err on the side of caution and withdraw the job offer as there are probably plenty in the talent pool to replace me. But that could just be me being negative and paranoid. After all, I’m a bus driver at the moment and DVLA are happy with how it’s being managed so I’m sure that, as a conductor, the same standards should apply? Thanks guys. Any further input would be appreciated.
 

Stigy

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Thank you

thanks for that, it makes sense. I was diagnosed about a year ago. I never knew I had it until then. The app that’s linked to the machine (and automatically sends the info to the hospital apnea clinic I’m under) has about 12 months of readings on it except for a 2 week period about 2 months ago when a piece of the equipment broke and I had to wait for the a replacement part. So I hope that being able to show this to the medic should be enough.

my only concern is if they send that as part of the report to HR and they err on the side of caution and withdraw the job offer as there are probably plenty in the talent pool to replace me. But that could just be me being negative and paranoid. After all, I’m a bus driver at the moment and DVLA are happy with how it’s being managed so I’m sure that, as a conductor, the same standards should apply? Thanks guys. Any further input would be appreciated.
I wouldn’t be surprised if another factor taken in to account is the job in questions. For example, they may be more concerned with a driver having the condition than a Guard/Conductor? That’s solely based on the fact that different safety critical roles often have different standards (drivers have an ECG for example, whereas other grades often don’t).
 

LCC106

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Make sure you declare it, giving additional information as required. When discussing it with the railway Doctor emphasise the fact that you work in a safety critical role as a bus driver, that it is being monitored etc. and by being open and not hiding anything that's all they can ask of you. HR are not medical professionals. They will rely on the reports provided.
 

rhys37429

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i have sleep apnea it never caused a problem at my medical.
but to be on the safe side id still inform the doctor when you have your medical.
 

Efini92

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Thanks for the response. Not sure it can be dealt with on an individual basis. Companies either have a policy on it or they don’t. Can’t accept 1 person but not another, there needs to be consistency. But I could be wrong?
The ones I know that have it just have to show they are getting so many hours sleep a night.
 

The One

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Yes I would 100% declare it at the medical then at least you have made them aware of this
 
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