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University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMBT)’s dedication to promoting the health and wellbeing of its staff has been applauded with the achievement of a Silver Better Health at Work Award (BHAWA).

The BHAWA is a progression based award initiative that recognises the efforts of employers who address and embed health and wellbeing within their workplace and helps them move forward in a structured and supported way. In 2017, the Trust was awarded the Bronze level of the award.

The Trust’s #FlourishAtWork campaign, which aims to improve the health and wellbeing of healthcare staff, launched in February 2016 with ‘Move More’, supporting everyone to be more physically active.

The Trust then kept up the pace with the launch of ‘Nourish Yourself’ to help support staff to eat more healthily.

This was followed by the ‘Be Mindful’ campaign, which encouraged staff to think about how our experiences and thoughts influence how we feel and act. All of these elements were then incorporated into a ‘Healthy Heart’ campaign which aimed to teach both staff and the public how moving more, eating well and being mindful all helps maintain a healthy heart.

Right from the start, members of staff from across all the Trust’s hospitals responded by getting involved in the campaign’s activities, such as the successful attempt to walk around the world together (beating the target of 50 million steps by more than 15 million steps!) and the healthy recipe competition where the winner cooked their winning entry at the Skylight restaurant at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary for staff and patients.

The Trust is determined to continue to build on all of this good work and have lots of new activities planned for this year to encourage staff to be as healthy and happy as they can be. David Walker, Medical Director, UHMBT, said: “We want our staff to flourish and to work in an environment where it is easy to remain healthy. UHMBT wants to provide great care, but also to be a great place for staff to work. The evidence is clear; improving the health and wellbeing of healthcare staff can improve outcomes for our patients. But just as important as the evidence, is that it’s just the right thing to do – treating our staff well and helping them be the best they can be. “Alongside our Flourish campaign, our teams have run lots of campaigns and initiatives to encourage staff to take charge of their health and wellbeing and support them to make positive changes. Some examples include; oral health campaigns, physical activity blogs and staff promoting images of their healthy breakfasts. “Many teams from across the Trust have been involved in completing the requirements of the Better Health at Work Award and we are very proud to have been accredited with the Silver level of the Award. However, this is much more than just an award to us – it is formal recognition that the things we are putting into place is what our staff want and deserve. We won’t stop here either – we have lots of exciting things planned for the next 12 months and hope that our staff across the Bay will support the campaigns and get as involved as they have done so far.”

Ken Gyles, Health and Wellbeing Support Officer for the Better Health at Work Award in Cumbria, said: “It has been a pleasure to work with UHMBT through both their Bronze and Silver awards and to see the proactive work that’s being done to further embed a culture of health and wellbeing into the workplace for staff and patients. I’m sure they will continue to embrace the agenda and even more staff will benefit from the new and ongoing activity as they go for Gold!”

For more information on the Better Health at Work Award visit http://www.betterhealthatworkne.org/

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