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Network of Healthy Living Ambassadors champion good health at work

31st January 2018

Almost 200 staff at 16 NHS organisations in London have received training to become Healthy Living Ambassadors as part of our work to make sure the capital’s workplaces support Londoners to lead healthier lives so avoidable illness and demand on NHS services is reduced.

The staff, including those at seven trusts and six CCGs, will form the start of a network of ambassadors who will actively promote good health in NHS workplaces and signpost colleagues to resources that will help them manage their physical and mental wellbeing.

There is a huge case for supporting Londoners to be healthier in the workplace. The NHS Five Year Forward View set out how the future health of millions of children, the sustainability of the NHS, and the economic prosperity of Britain all depend on a radical upgrade in prevention and public health. The Better Health for London report highlights the importance of prevention and includes an aspiration to make work a healthy place to be in London with an ambition to gain 1.5 million working days a year by improving employee health and wellbeing in the capital. The NHS performs poorly across many measures of staff health and wellbeing, with sickness absence rates that are 27 per cent higher than public sector average and 46 per cent higher than the average for all sectors.

The Healthy Living Ambassadors training aims to equip NHS staff with the tools, techniques and leadership skills to share their passion for health and wellbeing in the workplace, support colleagues to be healthier and lead and influence change in their organisation and beyond. The initiative focused on recruiting NHS staff who were already passionate about health and wellbeing or working in the area of workplace health.

Forty-four ambassadors have been trained at the Homerton University NHS Foundation Trust, 38 at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, 29 at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and seven at the Whittington Hospital.

Twenty ambassadors will promote workplace health across the North West London Collaboration of CCGs, with ambassadors trained at Brent CCG, Harrow CCG, Hounslow CCG,  Ealing CCG,  Hammersmith and Fulham CCG, Central London CCG, and in shared teams at the  collaboration’s Marylebone road offices.

Fifty ambassadors have been trained across Barts Health NHS Trust, Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare NHS Trust, NELFT NHS Foundation Trust, Health Education England, Healthy London Partnership and the London Borough of Hackney.

An estimated additional 300 staff will be trained as ambassadors in other NHS organisations in 2018.

Up to 300 staff in South East and North Central London STP areas are also receiving training to support people’s mental health at work.

NHS organisations interested in offering the free Healthy Living Ambassadors training to their staff in 2018 should contact nathan.winch@nhs.net

Healthy Living Ambassadors – Guy’s and St Thomas’

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