Session 4

Wednesday 24 March : 3.15 pm – 4.30 pm


Session Sponsor

This session explores the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the physical and mental health of the oil and gas workforce and examines how organisations have responded in order to support their people.  The session includes a medical perspective on the question asked a lot: “who should work offshore?” and the challenges of managing the main physical and mental health issues affecting the industry before and during the pandemic.

Speakers and Panellists

Steve Rae
Executive Director
Step Change in Safety

Steve Rae is the Executive Director at Step Change in Safety, his career path is certainly one less travelled as having entered the Industry, as an Offshore Technician in 1982, he happened to find himself onboard Piper Alpha on July 6th, 1988. Having survived the horrific events of that night Steve chose to continue working in the Industry where he went on to become an accomplished executive. Over 35 years of industry experience has provided him with a unique perspective on safety culture, effective team leadership and engagement across all levels of workforce. Steve was a member of the Step Change in Safety Leadership Team from 2007/2010 and chaired Statoil’s (Brazil) Aiming High Group in 2014/15. He has also held several senior positions including Operations Manager at Noble Drilling, Vice President International Drilling Operations at Seawell, Vice President QHSE at Archer and Operations Director at Wellsafe Solutions.


Lorna Creighton
Health Manager
Shell UK Upstream

Dr Lorna Creighton is an occupational health physician and health manager for Shell UK Upstream. A keen interest in diving medicine and wellness at work. Over 12 years of medical & industrial hygiene experience in the conventional oil & gas sector. Prior to this has worked within the NHS for approximately 10 years. A member of the Shell Incident Management Team, she has worked hard to apply rapidly changing legislation in an uncertain environment. She sits on the OGUK Pandemic Steering Group Health Subgroup and Testing Subgroup which serve to reduce COVID-19 risks to those in our industry. Recently she enjoyed skiing down the North face of Brimmond Hill in Aberdeen to boost her mental health and when lockdown exercise restrictions are relaxed, she will get back to paddle boarding, kayaking, scuba diving and travel.

Stuart Scott
Medical Director

International SOS (Medical Services) UK Limited

Dr Stuart Scott is the Medical Director for International SOS (Medical Services) UK Limited, based in Aberdeen. He currently provides medical advisory services to five offshore operators, four drilling contractors, a major service company and two vessel operators within the UK Continental Shelf, and for one drilling contractor globally. He is also clinically responsible for the Aberdeen-based Topside service, offshore medic training centre, COVID-19 testing services and the global International SOS MedDive service. Dr Scott joined the Capita Energy Services company in 2010, becoming Medical Director in 2013, this company became Iqarus in 2015 and entered into a joint venture partnership with International SOS in 2017 before becoming wholly owned by International SOS in 2019 and rebranding in 2020. Dr Scott graduated from Aberdeen University and trained in surgery for 5 years, before experience in psychiatry and obstetrics and gynaecology and working as a General Practitioner for 16 years.

Dr Graham Furnace
Medical Adviser

Dr Graham Furnace qualified from Glasgow University Medical School in 1985.  After two years in anaesthesia and then GP training, he worked as a civilian General Practitioner for the British Army in Germany 1991/92, and then moved into occupational medicine, joining RGIT Ltd in Aberdeen in 1993.  He completed his training in occupational medicine at RGIT, gaining his MFOM in 2001.

Dr Furnace has worked in non-oil related occupational medicine (including the National Health Service and three years with Grampian Police Force) but has principally practiced in the oil industry for most of his career to date.  He has been medical advisor to Maersk Oil North Sea or its predecessors since 1997 – 2018, and has been medical advisor to OGUK since April 2009.


Jake Molloy
Regional Organiser

Jake began working offshore in 1980 providing accommodation maintenance services on the Chevron operated Ninian Field. Multi discipline roles developed taking him into fire and gas system testing, process and production assistant, before moving into lifting and helideck operations with a move to the Shell operated Brent Field in 1986.

February 1990 saw him elected as an Offshore Safety Representative, a new statutory role in the industry implemented by the UK government in the aftermath of the Occidental Piper Alpha disaster of 1988. Jake combined this role with that of Helicopter Landing Officer for almost 7 years. In 1997 he was elected as a full-time trade union official with responsibility for offshore operations. Jake participates in several UK industry health and safety forums including the Step Change Leadership Team, the Offshore Major Accident Hazards Advisory Committee, and the Offshore Helicopter Safety Leadership Group. Jake is also the Chairman of the Offshore Coordinating Group made up of the five trade unions organising in the UK North Sea.