Relevant Legislation and Best Practice Standards: The Working Time Regulations 1998.
A Night Worker is defined as someone who regularly works at least 3 hours of daily working time during 11.00pm and 6.00am.
Under the Legislation above, employers are required to ensure that workers are fit for night work and must offer a free health assessment before starting working nights and to all night workers on a regular basis (usually annually).
As a minimum, the regulations recommend seeking health professional advice to design a suitable health-screening questionnaire and to offer a medical examination where the questionnaire shows there to be a problem. Employers must retain records of the fitness status of their workers for at least two years.
Special consideration should be given to the health effects of night work on ageing, pregnant, or new mothers whom maybe more vulnerable to risk of night work. If a worker suffers from health problems that are caused or made worse by night work, then employers should, where possible, transfer them to day work.