NHS Health at Work August bulletin

/Board members/Giles_Wright

Dear Colleagues
I do hope you’ve managed to stay cool during the recent heat wave!  From one hot topic to another… health and work is featuring high on the agenda of a number of national organisations at present. I’m delighted that as a Network we have all been asked to help influence government policy. I do hope you’ll read item 3 with interest and be able to take up the invitation.

The news from Public Health England about the Pertussis vaccination has generated lots of discussion and planning within my service and no doubt yours too. We’ve provided links to full details currently available below.

Lastly but definitely not least, last call for the Network conference. Do book your place by 20 August. There’s another great agenda lined up so don’t miss out. On behalf of Shriti and the Board, we wish you a very pleasant and restorative summer. See you in September.

With very best wishes

Giles Wright
Deputy Network Chair


The next edition will be circulated on 3rd September 2019.

In this edition:

1. Network conference – book your place by 20th August
2. Government consultation on measures to reduce health related job loss
3. Your chance to influence Government Policy
4. Certificate in OH Case Management – member discount
5. MoHaWK - Round 15 will remain open until 23rd August
6. Pertussis vaccination for healthcare workers
7. BBVs in healthcare workers: health clearance and management
8. NICE Flu vaccination: increasing uptake quality standard
9. Coventry University research work on older workers and MSD
10. CEOHG conference
11. Occupational Lung Disease – Keeping up to date
12. NHS Employers update

1. Network conference – book your delegate places by 20th August

Just a couple of weeks left to make sure you have booked your place at our annual conference on 4th and 5th September at Chesford Grange.  More information is available here or download a programme.

Network members have a free place for a member of their team but still need to complete a booking form to let us know who will be attending (including dinner and accommodation at the venue on 4th September and the conference on 5th September). Additional full places including overnight accommodation and dinner can be booked at a cost of £295, or day places for just £150.

Non-members can also attend the day of the conference only on 5th September. The cost for this is £295.

If you have any queries please contact admin@nhshealthatwork.co.uk.

2. Government Consultation on Measures to Reduce Health Related Job Loss

The Government has published Health is everyone’s business, a public consultation seeking views on different ways in which government and employers can take action to reduce ill health-related job loss.

Each year more than 100,000 people leave their job following a period of sickness absence lasting at least four weeks. Offering flexibility, early support and occupational health advice are the key to successful retention in the workplace.

We know that many employers already see the case to invest in health and wellbeing. But some, particularly smaller ones, might not have the knowledge or time to support their employees with health conditions, even when they want to. The Government’s consultation seeks to address these challenges and is focussed on four main areas:

  • Amending the legal framework to encourage early action to support individuals when they are absent from work and to facilitate more conversations to agree effective workplace modifications;
  • Reforming of Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) so that it is better enforced, more flexible, and support the lowest paid employees;
  • Measures to improve availability of high-quality, cost-effective occupational health (OH) services for employers; and
  • Improving advice and support from government for employers to understand and act on their responsibilities.

You can help shape future plans in this exciting area by accessing the consultation via this link, which will be open until 7th October 2019. Your views will be invaluable in helping Government to understand the implications of any reforms and how any potential changes can be best implemented in the future. This will be vital in ensuring Government provides employers and employees with the most effective support going forward.   

3. Your chance to influence Government Policy

The Work and Health Unit (WHU), a UK government unit which brings together the Department of Health and the Department for Work and Pensions, is conducting an important piece of research on the OH workforce. WHU has commissioned IFF Research, an independent research agency, to map the current state of occupational health provision in the UK. 

As part of the study, IFF will be speaking to NHS Health at Work providers that offer occupational health services commercially and private providers of occupational health services, to understand more about their workforce. By occupational health we mean managing sickness absence and health conditions when they arise and supporting people’s return to work.

They will be looking to speak to someone with an overview of staffing, recruitment and training of staff that are involved in the delivery of occupational health services. The interview will last around 15 minutes and will take place at a time most convenient for you during August and September 2019. We hope that you will be able to spare some time to take part, as your participation would be very valuable.

Please be assured that research responses will not be attributable to individuals or to organisations as all data will be reported in aggregate form and any comments will be anonymised. In line with GDPR legislation, you also have the right to access, withdraw your consent to use and object to processing of your personal data. All personal data will be destroyed within 6 months of the research interview. Further information about IFF can be found at www.iffresearch.com.

If you are willing to take part please send an email to OHworkforce@iffresearch.com. If you have any queries about the research, you can contact the team at IFF Research (email OHworkforce@iffresearch.com, or telephone Zainab Hazel or Isabel Kearney on020 7250 3035). If you would like to verify the authenticity of this research please contact Maisie Payne at WHU, via email at MAISIE.PAYNE@dwp.gov.uk.

4. Certificate in OH Case Management – member discount

2-4 October 2019 - Central London

The At Work Partnership is delighted to offer NHS Health at Work network members a discount of £200 + VAT for places on our Certificate in OH Case Management. This highly regarded, practical three-day qualification is designed to train occupational health and other professionals in the theory and practice of case management skills – in order to improve absence management, job retention and return-to-work outcomes.

Book by 10 August 2019 to qualify for our early bird rates. (NHS Network members needing extra time to book at the early bird rates should get in touch as we may be able to extend until the end of August). 

More information is available here

5. MoHaWK - Round 15 will remain open until Friday 23rd August

Round 15 opened on 1st July for data inputting. It will remain open until Friday 23rd August which allows plenty of time to collate data from your system and input even if you are going on holiday!. If you need a reminder on the data requirements the briefing notes are attached.

Don’t forget that new back pain indicators for Round 15 have been added Feedback has suggested that users wanted us to expand the back pain audit section. So three new indicators have been added to this section for Round 15. 

For those services working towards SEQOHS accreditation, the paper and electronic record keeping audits may prove very valuable to you. Two excel tools to aid data collection are available on the Knowledge Management area of the system as well as the manager and worker (face to face and telephone) feedback sections.

Any questions, please do contact me hilary.winch@nnuh.nhs.uk.

6. Pertussis vaccination for healthcare workers

Information regarding occupational pertussis vaccination for certain healthcare workers is now available online. The vaccine is now available to order in line with the attached guidelines.

7. BBVs in healthcare workers: health clearance and management

The above guidance, which was issued in 2017, has just been updated. You can download a copy here.

8. NICE Flu vaccination: increasing uptake quality standard consultation

The consultation period for the draft ‘flu vaccination: increasing uptake quality’ standard is now open.

The consultation documents and comments form are available on the website.  Please use the appropriate form to comment and ensure all relevant fields are completed. Responses must be submitted to QSconsultations@nice.org.uk by 5pm on Tuesday 3 September 2019.

9. Coventry University research work on older workers and MSD

Coventry University is looking for employees over the age of 50 with a chronic musculoskeletal condition (MSD) to take part in a survey. The aim of this research is to identify the strategies that older employees are offered and use to manage their chronic MSDs at the workplace. Your opinion and knowledge as an active member of the ageing workforce can contribute much to the aims of this project.
As a participant in this study, you would be asked to complete an online questionnaire that will last approximately 20 minutes. Your participation is entirely voluntary, and you can opt out at any stage. 

To participate or learn more about this study you can follow this link and/or contact the principal researcher: Glykeria Skamagki, ab7685@coventry.ac.uk.

10. CEOHG conference

The Central England OH Group is offering a one day conference on 11th November. Speakers include Professor Diana Kloss, Hamish Moore, Dr Nerys Williams, Nicola Suckley, Dr Julia Denning, Professor Amanda Griffiths and Glyn Morris.

More information and booking is available here.  

11. Occupational Lung Disease courses

The National Heart and Lung Institute, London SW3 6LY, is offering the following courses. Please note: each course is first-come first-served; events 2 and 3 below in particular are expected to fill very quickly; for events 2-4, registration is by card only; no invoices. Follow the links for more information.

Occupational Lung Disease – Keeping up to Date
Thursday 12 September - Registration fee: £150
Lung Function Testing in the Workplace: Introductory Level
Wednesday 6 November - Registration fee: £175
Lung Function Testing in the Workplace: Intermediate Level
Wednesday 13 November - Registration fee: £175
Introductory Medical Statistics
Thursday 14 to Friday 15 November

12. NHS Employers update

Tools, resources and good practice

  • New funding is available to improving the working environments for junior doctors in NHS trusts. See our top tips for creating a healthy working environment.
  • Use our Calendar of national health and wellbeing campaigns for 2019-20 to boost momentum and plan your healthy lifestyle awareness raising activities.
  • To implement an effective strategy to either promote healthy lifestyles in staff or embed a healthy working environment, the NHS Health and Wellbeing Framework contains evidence-based advice for targeted support and interventions and approaches for prevention and self-management.
  • Luton and Dunstable University Hospital’s Fit in 50 initiative promotes regular exercise and healthy eating throughout the day for staff. Find out more information about their approach in this blog.
  • Sleep expert Dr. Michael Farquhar writes about the importance of sleep for a healthy NHS workforce and his top tips to ensure staff are well rested.
  • Read about University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust collaborative working and why they decided to link health, safety and wellbeing. 
  • Watch this new film which helps nurses find healthy ways to cope with stress, anxiety and fatigue and overcome unhealthy lifestyles.
  • Check out South Yorkshire Partnership Foundation Trust’s health and wellbeing campaign #allofus for those looking to boost engagement and effectively communicate your health and wellbeing activities.

NHS Employers Regional Network Events 
Our NHS Employer health and wellbeing regional events offer an opportunity to connect with your local network and share good practice, critically evaluate your current health and wellbeing offer for NHS staff, and collaboratively develop solutions and strategies to shared challenges. Book your place and take a look at the full agenda. 100% of delegates told us they ‘agreed or strongly agreed’ that their key objective for attending was met!

*Please note places are limited to one booking per trust, any additional bookings will be added to our waiting list.

Health and Wellbeing Network Conversations 
Thank you to all those who dialed into our best attended network conversation to date. The conversation included plenty of discussion and good practice on evaluating health and wellbeing in your organisations. Our conversations are a great place to share ideas and chat with health and wellbeing leads from across the health sector. To join next month's network conversation on 21 August 10am - 11am email healthandwellbeing@nhsemployers.org

Mind Mental Health Survey
Take part in and share widely Mind’s Big Mental Health Survey to help make sure everyone is getting the right support for their mental health. 

The NHS Health at Work Network brings together all OH teams providing health and wellbeing services to NHS OH staff.  It is dedicated to providing consistent, high quality health at work services to all NHS staff through collaborative working.

Members of OH teams in NHS Health at Work Network member organisations can receive the bulletin and access the restricted areas of the website as a membership benefit – if you are not sure of your login details email admin@nhshealthatwork.co.uk.

Please share this bulletin with colleagues and encourage them to register to receive it regularly.

Non-Network members can also register to receive the monthly bulletin.

You can contact the Network through your regional representative or as shown below. Please get in touch if you have any queries or comments, if there is anything you would like to see in future issues of the bulletin, or if you have news to share.

Dr Shriti Pattani, Chair shritipattani@nhs.net
Andrew Gilbey, Network Manager andrew.gilbey25@gmail.com
Wendy Coleman, Network Administrator admin@nhshealthatwork.co.uk

Postal address: PO Box 642, BS23 9NG
Tel: 07584 269322