Health Checks at work

14 March 2016

East Kent Housing is just one organisation who is taking advantage of the offer of free NHS Health Checks at work! The company, which deals with social housing for Canterbury, Dover, Thanet and Shepway districts, invited Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust staff in to carry out the checks at three of their offices in east Kent, as part of their wider commitment to the health and wellbeing of their colleagues.

Head of Corporate Services for East Kent Housing, David Willis, explains the rationale behind the strategy; “As a company we’ve been through a lot of change recently and as part of this we had discussions with colleagues about looking after their health and wellbeing. Our work often involves dealing with people in vulnerable or challenging situations, which in turn can have an impact on team morale. Taking positive steps, like offering health checks at work, demonstrates a commitment to the physical and mental wellbeing of our colleagues.”

Housing Services Manager Jan Hatcher, 57, was glad to take up the offer of an NHS Health Check at work, but was concerned about her results. The Folkestone mum said: “My blood pressure was very high at 157 over 90 and my cholesterol was also high at 8.33. I’ve been told to see my GP as soon as possible so I’ve made an appointment to see her on Friday. If I hadn’t been offered this check at work I wouldn’t have known. I wouldn’t have gone to my GP in the first place for a health check because I feel absolutely fine in myself. I’ll see what the GP says but in the meantime I’m going to start making some lifestyle changes straight away.”

East Kent Housing is working towards the Kent Healthy Business Award. Kate Marsh, who is an executive support officer, coordinates a staff health and wellbeing group, which actively promotes a wide range of health and wellbeing opportunities team members. Kate said: “as well as the health checks, we are also taking part in the Kent Workplace Challenge – a county-wide programme that aims to increase physical activity – and we have started to roll out lunchtime walking groups from our offices. I’m also taking part in the KCHFT Food Champions programme.”

For more information on the Kent Healthy Business Awards visit kent.gov.uk and search for ‘healthy business’.

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