You are here: Home Employee Health Testing FAQ Pre-Employment Medical vs. Pre-Placement Medical: What is the Difference?

Pre-Employment Medical is a medical exam or health assessment of an employee, which can be used as part of the decision of whether to make a job offer to a prospective employee. Pre-Employment Medicals are generally illegal in Canada.

Pre-placement Medical, also known as a Post-Offer Medical, is a medical conducted after the employee has been extended a job offer, but before they have been 'placed' in the position.

Although the term "pre-employment and pre-placement examinations" appears in some provincial health & safety regulations, it has been superceded by decisions of various Human Rights commissions and tribunals.

For example, the Ontario Human Rights Commssion has a policy on Employment Related Medicals in which it rules that medical questions asked before someone is hired violate the Ontario Human Rights code, as noted in the following quote:

Pre-Employment Medicals - Ontario

In the past employers often screened out applicants with disabilities based on medical information requested on application forms or obtained through pre-employment medical examinations. The Commission believes that such questions, asked as part of the application screening process, violate subsection 23(2) of the [Ontario Human Rights] Code.

Any medical assessment to verify or determine an individual's ability to perform the essential duties of a job should only take place after a conditional offer of employment is made, preferably in writing.

Employers in Canada must therefore make hiring decisions based on a prospective employee's merit, and only after the hiring decision is made can a pre-placement medical can be used to validate whether or not the employee is medically fit for the position.

The distinction between pre-employment medicals and pre-placement medicals is therefore critical in Ontario and in Canada.  By contrast, this difference in terminology is less important for employers in countries like the United States, where pre-employmentmedicals may be legal.

Contact us to learn more about Pre-Placement Medical requirements in Ontario and Canada.

You are here: Home Employee Health Testing FAQ Pre-Employment Medical vs. Pre-Placement Medical: What is the Difference?

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