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Employee Benefits - The role of occupational health in a holistic wellbeing strategy

Need to know: 

  • Occupational health services support the physical and mental health of employees, and provide organisations with insight into and methods of reducing sickness absence.
  • The services work well alongside initiatives such as vocational rehabilitation and employee assistance programmes (EAPs).
  • While the world is shifting towards holistic wellness, organisations should keep occupational health at the core, and use its lessons around auditing and measurement to influence other strategies.

Employers are taking an increasingly proactive approach to the health and wellbeing of staff; according to a straw poll of Employee Benefits readers, published in January 2019, three in 10 (30%) cite employee wellbeing as the key driver for their organisation’s benefits strategy in 2019.

The role of occupational health is to keep employees well at work, both physically and mentally. Occupational health services encompass the prevention of ill-health, managing and promoting employee wellbeing, and ensuring that work practices and environments are modified to the needs of individual employees.

With an increased awareness of issues around mental health, and the interplay between this and physical wellness, influencing the employee benefits industry as a whole, occupational health should be a key part of any wellbeing strategy.

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