Can Someone With Hepatitis B Work As A Nurse In UK?

employer and employee

Hepatitis B is a type of liver infection. A virus is to blame. There is a vaccination available to guard against it. Hepatitis B is mild in some people and only lasts a short time. These “acute” cases may not necessarily necessitate medical attention. However, it has the potential to become chronic. If this occurs, it can result in organ scarring, liver failure, and cancer, and it can even be deadly.

It spreads through contact with the blood, open sores, or bodily fluids of someone infected with the hepatitis B virus.

It’s serious, but if you catch it as an adult, it shouldn’t stay long. Within a few months, your body fights it off, and you’re immune for the rest of your life. That means you won’t be able to acquire it again. However, if you are born with it, it is unlikely to go away.

The term “hepatitis” refers to liver inflammation. Other kinds of hepatitis exist. There is also hepatitis A and hepatitis C, both of which are caused by viruses.

hepatitis B patient

What are the symptoms of hepatitis B?

Many HBV infections arise during childhood or infancy. This is due to the fact that a mother might spread HBV to her child during childbirth. Doctors seldom identify HBV in children because it creates few visible signs.

Symptoms of a new HBV infection may be absent in children under the age of five, as well as in adults with a depressed immune system. Around 30-50% of those aged 5 and up will exhibit early signs and symptoms.

Acute symptoms begin 60-150 days after virus exposure and can continue several weeks to six months.

A person with a chronic HBV infection may experience recurring bouts of stomach pain, tiredness, and aching joints.

Early signs and symptoms

If HBV causes early symptoms, these may include:

  • fever
  • joint pain
  • fatigue
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • loss of appetite
  • abdominal pain
  • dark urine
  • clay colored stools
  • jaundice, or yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes

Can someone with hepatitis B work as a nurse in UK?

employer and employees

In the UK, your hepatitis B status is required for the following:

  • Pre-employment
  • For students who will enter medical internship
  • Health-care workers like doctors , nurses, lab scientist etc

Can an employer demand a medical exam or ask medical questions after making an offer?

Yes. Employers can ask you to answer specific medical questions (such as vaccine coverage) and undergo a medical exam after the offer is issued, as long as everyone who performs that work has to undergo the same exam.

If the medical exam discloses an impairment that precludes you from performing the work, even after a “reasonable accommodation,” the employer has the right to revoke the job offer.

Can an employer withdraw a job offer after learning I have hepatitis B? 

No, because the vast majority of persons with hepatitis B are healthy, productive, and capable of working. Hepatitis B does not hinder your capacity to work as a teacher, nurse, doctor, or home health aide unless you have serious liver illness.

If your hepatitis B status is discovered through a blood test or exam, that information should only be shared with the human resources department. Employers are required by federal law to maintain all medical records and information secret and in separate files.


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