HEIGHT: I am not very tall - what is the minimum height requirement?
There is no height restriction, but you must be able to successfully complete all components of the Applied Policing Skills Assessment Day (APSAD) to show that you are able to undertake the physical requirements associated with being an operational General Duties police officer.
WEIGHT: My Body Mass Index (BMI) is over 30 - will this prevent me from being successful during the recruitment process?
The pre-employment medical provider will determine if your weight may be an issue. BMI is used as a guide only. You will be required to complete a medical indemnity form prior to undertaking any physical assessment, including APSAD, and you must successfully complete all assessment tasks.
If you are obese, you are more likely to be injured during training. If your weight impedes your ability to perform the duties required of an operational police officer, you may be advised to lose weight and follow an exercise program to increase your physical fitness. You may be passed as medically fit even if your BMI is high, particularly if you are of a muscular build.
VISION: I am colour blind - can I still be accepted into the QPS?
A colour vision deficiency can potentially exclude an applicant from the process. Colour vision is an inherent occupational requirement of an operational police officer. Colour vision will be tested at the time of your pre-employment medical examination.
You may still apply, however if you suspect you are colour blind to any degree, it may be advisable to visit an optometrist who offers colour vision testing as part of a bulk-billed eye examination before applying to be a police recruit.
If you are identified as a 'protan' or 'deuteranope', you will not meet the QPS standards. In circumstances where you are identified as deutranomalous, you will be asked to undertake a colour assessment by the medical provider. If you are able to identify distinct colours, as opposed to shades, you may meet the QPS standard.
HEARING: I have some loss of hearing - will this be an issue?
You may be required to have an assessment by an audiologist to ascertain the extent of the hearing loss. Your pre-employment medical provider may conduct practical tests, if deemed necessary. Should you use a hearing aid and pass the tests, you will be required to wear the aid while on duty.
PSYCHOLOGICAL SUITABILITY FOR POLICING
Can I apply if I have been diagnosed with a mental disorder or psychiatric illness (e.g. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Depression, Adjustment Disorder etc.)?
Police officers are required to perform a wide range of operational law enforcement duties, often under highly stressful, dangerous and life-threatening conditions. The psychological demands of policing can be very intense. Thus, it is essential that you are free of any mental illness, psychological symptoms or cognitive disability that would prevent you from performing general police duties.
Consequently, the mental health standards for joining the QPS are quite stringent and people who have a psychiatric or psychological condition, which would otherwise prevent them from performing unrestricted operational duties, cannot be selected for employment. Additionally, if you have a history of psychiatric and/or psychological problems, you must be able to demonstrate that you are able to perform operational policing duties without a clear risk of exacerbating any previous conditions. The more significant your psychiatric/psychological history, the longer you may be required to demonstrate psychological stability.
To ensure you meet our guidelines, in addition to conducting our own psychological assessment of suitability, we will require you to complete a Medicare Waiver and also seek a report from your treating doctor or mental health professional.
The pre-employment medical provider may discuss this information with you during any subsequent medical examination.
I have schizophrenia and take medication for this condition - can I still apply?
Unfortunately, it is highly unlikely you would meet the medical entry standards, as schizophrenia is generally considered to be chronic illness for which there is no cure, only treatment.
I currently have asthma - will this be an issue?
It is very unlikely that you will be medically suitable, if the diagnosis is correct. You should check your status with your GP. If we have any concerns, you will be required to undertake a bronchial provocation test.
I currently take asthma medication - can I still apply?
It depends on the result of a bronchial provocation test and the type of medication you take. If you are taking preventative medication for asthma and return a negative bronchial provocation test, you may be suitable.
Many adults who were asthmatic as children continue to take medication even though they no longer have asthma. If you believe you may be in this category, the pre-employment medical provider may provide you with individual advice on how to proceed.
I had childhood asthma - can I still apply?
You would be considered if you have been symptom/treatment free for the past two years and your asthma has not impaired your ability to exercise. Please note that "treatment" includes those people who take a puff of Ventolin or a similar medication before exercising "just in case".
MEDICAL - ORTHOPAEDIC
I have had knee/shoulder surgery - will this prevent me from being medically suitable?
It will depend on the current condition of the affected joint.
The pre-employment medical provider will need a report from your specialist stating the current strength and mobility of the affected joint. It will depend on the length of time that has elapsed since the operation and whether there have been any issues since the injury/operation.
Generally, the longer it has been since your operation and the more physically active you have been since then, the more likely your chances of success. A report from your treating specialist may not be necessary if it has been more than five years since your surgery and you are engaged in regular intense physical activity.
Can I take blood pressure medication and still apply?
Yes, provided it is not one of the types of medication that limits your ability to exercise. A specialist report may be required in some cases.
I have epilepsy - can I still join?
Your seizures must have ceased a long time ago and you must have been off medication for some period. Further, you will need to have an EEG that shows no evidence of abnormal activity following sleep. This condition will need to be discussed with your pre-employment medical provider.
I have diabetes - will this affect my application?
If you have Type 2 (non-insulin dependent) diabetes, you may be considered providing that:
- your blood sugar levels are well controlled
- your glycosylated haemoglobin level is normal, and
- you do not take medication that might cause hypoglycaemic attacks.
If you have Type 1 (insulin dependent) diabetes, you may be at particular risk due to the unpredictable nature of police duties, which can restrict opportunities for regular exercise or create the need for sustained and unexpected physical exertion.
If you have Type 1 diabetes, you may be suitable for entry to the QPS if you meet all of the following criteria:
- You use a device that delivers insulin in a way that is responsive to blood sugar levels (i.e. continuous delivery pumps, including implantable pumps).
- You have no history of hypoglycaemic episodes while using the abovementioned device.
- Your Glycosylated haemoglobin level is normal.
- You suffer no complications of diabetes that would prevent you from recognising hypoglycaemia.
The pre-employment medical provider will review and determine your suitability when they have all available information.