A £406M plan to tackle occupational health issues throughout the UK has been pledged in the Chancellor’s spring budget plans.
This comes after many workers who are suffering from long-term health conditions have been forced to leave the workplace. Sadly some workers are struggling to find employers willing to invest in employing them. This is due to the cost of extra support.
At last, conditions like back pain, neurological issues and other occupational health problems now seem to be the focus of the UK government. And, in an unexpected turn of events, they have pledged a multi million pound scheme to help SMEs employ people with known health conditions and disabilities.
The importance of Occupational health support
Skilled workers can be hard to find. So limiting the available pool of candidates to just able-bodied and ‘healthy’ workers can make this task almost impossible. Furthermore, some workers are suffering with health conditions because of a lack of consistent occupational health support in previous roles.
Unfortunately this is something that some employers can be lax about, despite the cost of fines far outweighing the cost of safeguarding workers.
Moreover, protecting workers from ill health or injury at work should be high on the agenda for bosses since there are many benefits of doing so. This includes:
- Increased performance
- Better efficiency
- Less sick days at the cost of the business
What’s more, Occupational Health has been linked to competitive advantage. Possibly owing to some of the points we’ve highlighted above.
Thankfully the government has now recognised the need for more support , despite Occupational Health and Hygiene being a legal requirement for most UK businesses.
What the HSE Say
The HSE is the UK’s governing body for the health and wellbeing of employees. They also regularly hold businesses accountable for a lack of compliance that has led to an employee suffering injury or illness whilst at work. Without the HSE, more businesses would be evading their responsibilities towards workers.
Part of their role is to set out the standards for businesses to follow around worker health and wellbeing. This can include things like:
- Whether health surveillance needs to be implemented
- Making Sure their are measures in place to protect workers from injury or long-term ill health
- Implementing standards for risk assessment for certain areas of workplace compliance
Of course, there is more to it than that! Workforce compliance can be a time consuming and lengthy process. And we know that some organisations struggle to keep on top of it.
How we can help with occupational health regulations
Safety First Group have almost a decade’s experience with helping UK businesses with their compliance requirements. We’ve made occupational health and hygiene a core part of our business, so we can help businesses like yours to stay compliant.
Whether its risk assessment, ongoing health surveillance for high-risk employees, performing air or water sampling, we are always in our element.
And with a team of highly skilled technicians, we can consult with you on your overall objectives around worker health and wellbeing before we get started.
Keep your eyes peeled for more information on help you can get for Occupational Health in the Spring budget from us in the months to follow!