The Kansas Act Against Discrimination prohibits employment practices that discriminate on the basis of mental or physical disability (KS Stat. Sec. 44-1009). According to guidelines issued by the state Human Rights Commission, this prohibition limits an employer's right to require medical examinations for job applicants and employees (KS Admin. Code 21-34-2). The Act covers private employers with four or more employees and all state and local government agencies, regardless of size.
Applicants. The guidelines provide that an employer may require a medical exam if:
• A conditional offer of employment has been made
• The exam is given to all applicants who have been offered employment in the same job category, regardless of disability
Employees. Employees may be given exams that are job related and consistent with business necessity. Voluntary exams may be offered if they are part of an employee health program available to employees at the worksite.
Information about an applicant's or employee's medical condition or history must be treated as a confidential medical record and kept on separate forms in a file separate from the individual's personnel record (KS Admin. Code Sec. 21-34-4). Information may not be disclosed except for the following:
• Supervisors and managers may be told about necessary restrictions and accommodations affecting the work or duties of an employee.
• First aid and safety personnel may be told, when appropriate, if an employee's disability might require emergency treatment.
• Government officials investigating compliance with the law must be provided relevant information on request.