National Medical Systems has announced their newest division: National Maritime Systems. The division will specialize in providing Maritime Medical Surveillance to employers who are responsible for deeming employees fit for duty who work at sea.
As opposed to employees who work on land, most seafarers are approximately 48 hours away from urgent care treatment. As a result, the medical standards, such as the Jones Act, or regulations created by the IMO, ILO, and US Coast Guard are stricter than OSHA regulations in what is deemed fit for duty.
In the event of an injury or illness, complex emergency care is usually unavailable on the vessel. In cases where injuries occur, maritime organizations will airlift employees via helicopter back to land for urgent care treatment. Not only does this incur significant costs, but the liability and workers compensation payouts can range in the hundreds of thousands, or even millions for undocumented illnesses.
NMS saw the need to provide the maritime industry with an all encompassing solution for managing Maritime Medical Surveillance. National Maritime Systems provides employers with a standardized program that puts seafarers through the proverbial wringer by completing a thorough and rigorous medical review.
The medical review is the crux of the new operation. It contains a team of occupational health personnel who exhaustively review all applicable maritime medical standards. This same teams work in conjunction with the medical review department to create a standardized medical review program, thus removing variance in interpretation and eliminating liability.
For more information on the announcement, please see the National Maritime Systems press release.