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New campaign launches to help tackle stress and obesity

Two of the biggest health issues affecting NHS staff are obesity and stress.

Last year, a study by Napier University made national headlines when it reported that seven out of 10 Scots nurses are obese.

What wasn’t well reported at the time was that the rest of us aren’t faring much better.

More than 50 per cent of other healthcare workers are either overweight or obese, according to the study.

Stress is also a major contributor to ill health, with more than 3000 staff in NHSGGC off sick with stress-related problems last year alone.

The development of our new Staff Health Strategy for 2017-2019 has identified five overarching themes. Behind these, a range of practical wellbeing action areas have been determined, including obesity and stress as two of the top priorities for improving staff health and wellbeing.

Now, a new year-long campaign has been launched to support staff who are struggling with stress and weight-related problems.

Over the year, Staff Newsletter will feature lots of practical support and tips and some of the success stories of teams and individuals for whom 2017 brings better health.

We know that much of this support is already available to staff, but we’ve been told that it’s difficult to find information about the help that’s available.

As part of the campaign, we’ve launched a new healthier place to work web portal on the website.

This brings together in one place information on the range of support for staff for managing stress and for weight management, as well as related topics, including smoking and financial inclusion.

Here too, you’ll be able to find all the latest information on the hugely popular activestaff and Healthy Working Lives activities.

Launching the campaign, Anne MacPherson, director of human resources and organisational development, said: “When developing the current Staff Health Strategy, we asked a range of staff stakeholders what our priorities should be.

“Improved communication and better access to information about health policies and support for staff were seen as key.

“This campaign is our response to that.

“By sharing good practice and improving access to information about all the resources and services available to them, we hope to make it easier for staff to take the first steps to better health in 2017.”