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December 27, 2019

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Mental health

Free Mental Health First Aid training for new research project

Researchers invite all companies in the UK to apply for free Mental Health First Aid England training, for a new study starting 2020, to investigate the effectiveness of mental health first aid training when used on employees.

Centre for Mental Health and London South Bank University (LSBU) will conduct a three-year long research called EMPOWER, to explore the benefits of mental health first aid intervention in the workplace, starting January 2020.

LSBU’s Dean of Applied Sciences said: “I am delighted that the Mental Health First Aid Association has awarded this pioneering project to LSBU after a rigorous and competitive selection”.

Why become a mental health first aider

Currently it’s estimated that mental ill health costs employers across the UK a total of £35 billion every year. There is increasing understanding that taking positive action on mental health in the workplace could help reduce some of the associated costs.

The research project has been commissioned by Mental Health First Aid England (MHFA), an international mental health literacy and skills training company, and will be the first academic study of its kind to have a specially qualified MHFA professional in the workplace, to assess its benefits to employees.

Researchers will compare businesses that have the Adult MHFA training scheme in place, to companies that don’t to analyse the effectiveness of the programme, its economic impact and wider affect on organisational culture, by examining employees’ experience of providing and receiving mental health first aid.

Unlike previous research, this study will focus on the impact on those receiving support from trained mental first aiders, as opposed to how training benefits trainees in the workplace.

Simon Blake OBE, Chief Executive of Mental Health First Aid England said: “The EMPOWER study will help us to understand the wider impacts of implementing Mental Health First Aid training in the workplace. It will also enhance our understanding of the impact that increased mental health awareness, knowledge and skills brings to the workplace- in particular with regard to encouraging help-seeking behaviour.” 

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Nigel Evelyn-Dupree
Nigel Evelyn-Dupree

REASONABLE ADJUSTMENTS MITIGATING RISK OF RSI ?

The chicken and egg conundrum surrounding the reasonable management of preexisting disabilities whilst mitigating the risk of work-related repetitive stress injuries / presenteeism.

Up to around 58% of DSE Operators do not necessarily arrive with repetitive stress injuries yet, predictably the majority will experience debilitating degrees of eye-strain, blurred or worse double vision impairing performance or productivity by an average 20% overall, accounting for 30 days a year lost productivity and a 4 to 7 fold increased risk of asthenopic or myopic disease as well as WRULD’s and MSD’s.