These CPD activities and resources are designed to be completed after watching our CPD webinar ‘Occupational health and “good work” post pandemic’ with Professor Dame Carol Black.
In 1950, Donald Stewart published a seminal article in the BMJ, in which he identified that “the health of the individual at home and at work cannot be rationally separated”. This article, made recommendations for how occupational health should be delivered in the future.
Read the article and reflect on the areas that you feel have been positively developed over that period, as well as those elements that still require development.
“Good Work: The Taylor review of modern working practices” considered the implications of new forms of work on worker rights and responsibilities, as well as on employer freedoms and obligations. It set out seven principles to address the challenges facing the UK labour market.
Reflect on this review, which states that, while having employment is itself vital to people’s health and wellbeing, the quality of people’s work is also a major factor in helping people to stay healthy and happy, something which benefits them and serves the wider public interest.
Watch the following Ted Talk “The Happy Secret to Better Work”, in which psychologist Shawn Achor argues that happiness inspires us to be more productive.
Think about how the future of occupational health delivery can adapt to support new working practices in the wake of Covid-19. Millions of workers have moved into home working, resulting in related challenges to their health and wellbeing.
Read the following RSPH article examining the results of a survey on the mental and physical health impacts of home working during Covid-19.
Now read “The future of the occupational health workforce” – a review conducted by Nupur Yogarajah for SOM: https://www.som.org.uk/sites/som.org.uk/files/The_future_of_the_OH_workforce.pdf
In 2017, the then prime minister Theresa May asked Lord Dennis Stevenson and Paul Farmer to undertake an independent review into how employers can better support the mental health of all people currently in employment, including those with mental health problems or poor well-being to remain in and thrive through work. The report set out six mental health core standards:
- Produce, implement and communicate a mental health at work plan
- Develop mental health awareness among employees
- Encourage open conversations about mental health and the support available when employees are struggling
- Provide employees with good working conditions and ensure they have a healthy work life balance and opportunities for development
- Promote effective people management through line managers and supervisors
- Routinely monitor employee mental health and wellbeing.
Annex A provides detailed advice on how the mental health core standards can be implemented in practice. Read these recommendations and consider ways that you could more effectively implement the standards within your own organisation. You may wish to develop these ideas into an action plan to adopt in your practice.