On-board medical care

Image of medicine

All in all, the regulations ensure the seafarer free medical treatment, medicine, etc. during the service on board and during stays in foreign ports.

The special health insurance scheme for seafarers includes treatment services corresponding to those applicable in Denmark, but adjusted to the special conditions at sea. During the service on board, the seafarer also has a possibility of receiving financial subsidies from the State for certain types of acute dental treatments.

Medical treatment, etc.

The regulations on medical treatment and ship's medicine apply to seafarers on board all ships with the exception of ships engaged in voyages of no more than half an hour's duration at sea and towboats and other ships navi­gating port areas. Similarly, the regulations on occupational health apply to all commercial work carried out on board new as well as existing Danish ships.

The regulations ensure that, in consideration of a ship's trade area, a ship's medicine chest is on board with the prescribed equipment, guidelines and medicine and that the master and another seafarer has completed a medical examiner training programme meeting, inter alia, the requirements of the STCW Convention hereon.

The medical treatment on board must be arranged and carried out in accordance with the instructions given in the medical book authorised by the Danish Maritime Authority.

Through Radio Medical Denmark, professional assistance for both Danish and foreign ships free of charge is ensured 24 hours a day.

The ship's medical records, containing information about examinations, ordination from Radio Medical, treat­ment and the supply of medicaments, are confidential and handed over to the seafarer when he or she signs off. A copy of the record must be kept on board for a year, and subsequently the copy must be destroyed.

The Danish Maritime Occupational Health and Welfare Board publishes information and training material about job satisfaction, health prevention and accident prevention for seafarers.

Health service on board ships

A medical practitioner must be available on board if the number of persons on board exceeds 100. However, this is conditional upon the ship being engaged in voyages abroad of more than three days' duration.

Requirements for the medical treatment on board are stipulated in chapter II-3 of Notice B and Notice D, respec­tively.

Notice B applies to new cargo ships with a length (L) of or above 15 metres or with scantlings of or above 100 and to passenger ships engaged in international voyages.

Notice D applies to all new passenger ships engaged in domestic voyages.

The provision on medical treatment on board in Notice B is found in chapter II-3 and describes the requirements for a separate sickness bay where one is required.

However, instead of a sickness bay a treatment room can be established that must be appropriately equipped, including a washbasin and an acute treatment place when each member of the crew has his or her own cabin with associated toilet and shower.

Exemptions and equivalents

Any exemptions or equivalent solutions in relation to chapter II-3 must, however, be documented on board so that it is possible to verify compliance with the regulations during an inspection in a manner that is easy for the surveyor.



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