Medical Appeals

The primary objective of the Medical Inspector is to manage and resolve any disputes arising from a decision or finding by Occupational Medical Practitioners relating to the fitness status of mine employees in the South African mining industry as prescribed in Section 20 (1) (a) of the Mine Health and Safety Act, 1996 (Act 29 of 1996) , as amended.

The Medical Inspector takes into consideration all information available, including:

  • Reports from specialists
  • Reports from the Occupational Medical Practitioners
  • Reports from other health care professionals
  • A workplace visit, where necessary and
  • Interviews with relevant people.

The final ruling by the Medical Inspector is based on all the facts considered and not only on a singular report, interview or visit.  

The Medical Inspector assesses medical records of employees lodging section 20 appeals. To download a copy of the section 20 appeal brochure, please click here.

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Lodging a Section 20 Appeal:

Any employee at a South African mine can lodge a Section 20 appeal with the Medical Inspector with reference to:

  • A decision that such an employee is unfit to perform any particular category of work at a mine; or
  • Any finding of an Occupational Medical Practitioner contained in an exit certificate of such an employee.
Please note that the exit certificate does not address issues of fitness, thus, the complainant should not lodge an appeal disputing unfitness to perform work using the exit certificate or after the employee exited the mine.  

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A Section 20 appeal against unfitness should occur within 30 days after the decision of the Occupational Medical Practitioner that an employee is unfit to perform his/her work.

The employee should complete the Section 20 appeal form (DMR 142). To download a copy of the section 20 appeal form, please click here.

The employee may be assisted by the employee representative and administrative staff at the Mine Health and Safety Inspectorate with the lodging of a Section 20 appeal.

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The selected practitioner should assess the employee and submit a report to the Medical Inspector. The employee will not again be referred for assessment by the Department of Mineral Resources.

The final decision on fitness will be done by the Medical Inspector and not the independent practitioner chosen by the employee. The State may select or choose any relevant health practitioner, if necessary, for second opinion assessment.

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Matters that are not part of the Section 20 appeal process include: 

  • Incapacity processes to determine possibility of alternative work which should be addressed by the employer through human resources processes. 
  • Labour relations dispute processes at the employer should be followed if an employee is not satisfied with the outcome of the incapacity processes mentioned above. 
  • Processes established under the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) in terms of the Labour Relations Act (Act 66 of 1995) are in place when the employee feels that the process implemented and executed at the employer was unfair.
  • Complaints requiring investigations these should be lodged at Department of Mineral Recourses regional offices.
  • Compensation matters and/or the payment of mine benefits.

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For matters pertaining to compensation, an employee can contact:

Compensation Fund


Operating Hours:

07:30 to 16:00, Monday to Friday

Toll Free Number:

086 010 5350

Tel Number(s):

+27(0)12 319 9111/+27(0)12 309 5000

Fax Number(s):

+27(0)12 326 1570 / +27(0)12 357 1772

Street Address:

Compensation House


Cnr Hamilton Street and Soutpansberg Road



Postal Address:

PO Box 955





Email Address:

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