Guide Pratique pour les Médecins du Travail

You are an occupational doctor and you receive many employees who say they are “harassed” or suffering from work. The clinical interview with this type of employee is a test because it requires:

understanding , but not compassionate listening . You have to be with the employee, not on his side.

time, because this interview will have multiple aims: understanding, contextualizing, taking charge. For this extended interview, you need an appointment without time constraints in your professional agenda. The information that you will collect will be capitalized for the employees of the same company and for identical cases.

A specific course which can be based on the one we offer .

This interview should allow you to get out of the psychologizing interpretation (two employees who do not get along, a perverse narcissistic superior ..) and therefore from the accusative register, to be interested in work. The deterioration in relationships, work organization and the health of the employee provide elements that allow us to understand why they live as « harassed ». It should be recalled that since the promulgation of the law of social modernization moral harassment is no longer only a « psychological concept » but an offense . Only the judge can qualify a situation of moral harassment. So be careful …

However, it is a suffering employee who is in front of you, who must absolutely be removed from the pathogenic work context. It must therefore be sent to his referring doctor with a letter and if necessary with a notice of temporary incapacity .

This sick leave should not be a dead time but a period of hindsight allowing to heal, to understand, to develop solutions. By proposing to the employee to come and see you regularly as part of the pre-recovery visits you can:

1. check the consistency of his care (medical, psychotherapeutic) and measure the improvement in his physical and psychological state.

2. assess his professional situation that you are the only one who can know from the inside and therefore define a medical, professional, legal strategy:

– From the simplest, the return to the same position after elucidation of the causes of the deterioration of working conditions, or a transfer , a reclassification if the employee agrees.

– For the most complex, as in the case of an impossible return to the same position and therefore the employee’s wish to see their employment contract terminated by contractual termination or negotiation, or taking of legal action of the termination. Finally, if the situation is blocked, declare unfit for any position to lead to the rupture of the real and symbolic link with the company.


Interview with Paul Bouaziz on the use of the judicial process.

Interview with Paul Bouaziz on the lawyer.


3. the clinical data resulting from this management can be enlightening on the state of a company and lead to an alert.


See our models of progressive letters from the occupational doctor to the business manager.

This support can only be fully effective if the players responsible for the employee’s cooperation cooperate: general practitioner, occupational doctor, psychiatrist, psychotherapists. This coverage is based on absolute medical confidentiality and the professional independence of the occupational doctor.

In the case of excessively complex cases, recourse to consultations for professional pathologies or to suffering and work consultations becomes necessary.

Secondly, your function is to move from the individual to the collective :

The alert to the CHSCT, DPs and management is necessary but it is the mark of the failure of prevention.
Inform and sensitize CHSCT, DP, management when certain objective indicators of suffering at work increase
Define potential risks through work analysis in cooperation with CHSCT members, DP and Management (company file) for the purpose of primary prevention .