Objectives/Scope

With the rapid growth of the energy, mining and maritime industry in Asia, there is an increasing awareness of the health conditions for workers and engineers in remote areas. This has led healthcare practitioners to focus on developing the standardisation of medical services for all staff that live and work in remote sites. The objective is to educate the engineers and other professionals in the industry on the recommended approach to build a guideline which can be used for managing remote site medical clinics and services in Asia.

Methods, Procedures, Process

Through the contribution and discussion with subject matter experts from various fields of remote health in Asia, a set of guidelines has been built. It serves as a guide for healthcare practitioners to implement medical services in remote sites, including but not limited to offshore, mining and other remote installations. The guidelines are based on the healthcare system of several Asian countries, namely: Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, China and India. The risk assessment for remote site installations and the standardisation of healthcare practitioner's competency which is based on their knowledge, skills and experiences are also addressed.

Results, Observations, Conclusions

Measurement on the remoteness of a site is regarded as the key factor and standard to identify the medical support needs. However, simplistic reliance on one key factor could lead to potential costly mitigations such as special medication, diagnostics, resuscitative methods and enforcement of timely medevac. In some scenarios, timely medevac is simply not possible due to geographical distance, or lack of air medevac resources.

Therefore, using the measurement on the remoteness of the site to the nearest shore-based hospital may not be the best method to set the standard, as it limits the understanding of the risk levels of each specific site. It is also not applicable to some remote installations, particularly Asia.

It is proposed that a risk assessment methodology which evaluates the risk level on a case by case basis should be adopted in Asia. Through this, a healthcare practitioner can study the past data for each site, based on the impact of the hazard and the likelihood of an incident occurring at the particular remote site.

Consequently, the healthcare practitioner could identify the needs and recommend the appropriate medical service.

This results in the avoidance of litigation, reduction of lost-time injury, and unnecessary medical costs. Novel/Additive Information: The novelty of this paper is in the ability to help oil and gas companies mitigate the Health risks at remote locations specifically in Asia. Previous guidelines have been developed from the perspective of the North Sea market and applied universally, however there is now a clear need for specific guidelines for this region.

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