Clinton orders time off for preventive health screenings

Federal workers with limited sick leave will have up to four hours of paid time off each year for preventive health check-ups, President Clinton announced last week. Clinton issued his order in a memorandum that also directed agencies to notify federal workers that various leave and alternative work options may be used for preventive health screenings. Additionally, Clinton called on agencies to offer more preventive screenings through worksite health units and fitness centers. "For a simple investment of a few hours per employee, significant improvements in the health and well-being of the entire federal workforce will be the ultimate result," said Office of Personnel Management director Janice Lachance. OPM will help agencies to carry out the directive. Clinton's order provides workers entitled to less than 80 hours of accrued sick leave with an excused absence of up to four hours each year to obtain preventive health screenings. The Federal Employee Health Benefits Program covers preventive screenings for prostate, cervical, colorectal and breast cancer as well as sickle cell anemia, lead and cholesterol levels. Clinton issued his memorandum to mark the enactment of the Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Act. OPM provides a guide to preventative health services on its Web site.
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