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Wakefield Wellness Summit – July 5

The Yorkshire & Humber Academic Health Science Network (AHSN) is working with public sector organisations in Wakefield to implement its pioneering Workplace Wellness Programme.

Wakefield Workforce Wellness Summit InviteIt will be the first time that the Workplace Wellness programme, developed by Sheffield Hallam University of behalf of Yorkshire & Humber AHSN, has been implemented across all public sector organisations in one city.

It will be launched at Wakefield’s first Wellness Summit Wakefield Workforce Wellness Summit Invite on Tuesday 5th July at Unity Works, Westgate.

The Workplace Wellness Programme aims to improve the health and wellbeing of staff working in the public sector. Poor staff health and wellbeing costs the UK economy around £100 billion a year.

Under the programme, which will be led by Spectrum Community Health CIC, on behalf of the Wakefield Health & Wellbeing Board, employees at Spectrum, Wakefield Council and Wakefield CCG will be offered a free comprehensive fitness assessment and tailored individual support to help with lifestyle changes. The programme will also be extended to other member organisations of the Health & Wellbeing Board.

Lynsey Bowker, project lead for Workplace Wellness at the Yorkshire & Humber AHSN, said: “We are delighted that our programme is to be rolled out so extensively across Wakefield.

“We know from our experiences with NHS organisations that this programme is an effective way of helping people to make the lifestyle changes necessary to improve their health and wellbeing.”

Dr Linda Harris, Chief Executive at Spectrum Community Health CIC, said: “I’m delighted that we will be offering the wellness check to employees in the Wakefield District. We cannot underestimate the impact of looking after all our staff – from those delivering front line services to those working in remote locations or supporting teams in corporate-based services.

“Maintaining a healthy workforce not only benefits the individual but can only result in a higher quality of services for the public.”

The Workplace Wellness Programme was initially offered to members of the Yorkshire & Humber AHSN as NHS trusts that prioritise staff health and wellbeing have been found to perform better with improved patient satisfaction, higher levels of staff retention and local levels of sickness absence.

Evaluation of the programme among NHS staff showed that almost nine out of ten participants agreed that the project had a positive impact on their motivation to make changes to their lifestyle or health as a result. This included increasing physical activity (71%), improving healthy eating, nutrition or diet (71%), implementing strategies for weight management (37%), introducing mental wellbeing strategies (32%), reducing alcohol intake (11%), improving back care (7%) and quitting smoking (3%).

A second study of 277 employees from three trusts in Sheffield, Bradford and Airedale, 95% of staff reported making changes to their health or lifestyle and 98% agreed that the staff health and wellbeing programme would be a valuable workplace benefit.

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