Tag Archives: Wellbeing

Evidence Bites: Staffing Pressure

An evidence summary inspired by safety discussions held at the Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust’s Safety Summit

Why is staffing pressure a patient safety concern? Ensuring NHS providers are staffed with the appropriate number and mix of clinical professionals is vital to the delivery of quality care and in keeping patients safe from avoidable harm. Pressure on staffing may have implications for patient safety incidents relating to human factors and interruptions / distractions in the clinical environment.

New publication: The risks to care quality and staff wellbeing of an NHS system under pressure
A report commissioned by The King’s Fund in Jan 2018 summarises the research evidence on the direct and indirect impact of staff health, wellbeing and engagement on patient care.

Date of publication: Feb 2018

Thriving at Work: a review of mental health and employers

A Policy Briefing aimed at healthcare professionals is available for LKS staff to share in their own organisations. This has been produced and shared by the JET Library, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Please feel free to reproduce it (with acknowledgement to JET Library) for your own purposes.

Impact on library policy/practice: 

Whilst this driver is something that needs to be implemented at a higher level, there are still some things libraries can do to support it and the document demonstrates that investment in mental-health initiatives show a positive return.

Firstly, all NHS libraries contribute to the provision of information to patients and the public, and there are a number of suggestions in the PPI Ideas Bank that support mental wellbeing, including:

  • Offering work placements in the library team for service users recovering from mental illness.
  • Service user reading groups or book clubs
  • Provide materials for Recovery Colleges
  • Provide access to self-help collections such as the Reading Agency’s Books on Prescription titles, or Mood Boosting books

Libraries also support the wellbeing of staff (as recommended in the Boorman review), and this might be through self-help book collections, craft or reading groups, stress relief initiatives such as jigsaws and colouring books, organising mindfulness training, writing competitions, organising ‘pets as therapy’ sessions, or in many other ways. As well as staff, the needs of students need to be considered, and many universities are running programmes to support their students especially during exam time and NHS libraries might be involved in these, run their own, or signpost to them.

Libraries can also support managers to support their staff, and could look at what resources they have on managing staff wellbeing or engagement.

Whilst these are no substitute for formal mental health support, they are things that could help promote mental wellbeing and reduce the burden of mental ill-health on the individual and the organisation.

Source: Department for Work and Pensions and Department of Health

Link to main document

Publication format: PDF

Date of publication: October 2017

Summary of driver: Thriving at Work sets out what employers can do to better support all employees, including those with mental health problems to remain in and thrive through work.

Key features of driver:

  • 300,000 people with long-term mental-health problems lose their jobs every year
  • Around 15% of people in work have symptoms of an existing mental-health condition
  • The cost to employers of mental ill-health is estimated at between £33bn and £42bn
  • The cost to the Government is estimated at between £24bn and £27bn
  • The cost to the economy as a whole is estimated at between £74bn and £99bn
  • Case studies consistently show a positive return on investment for mental-health initiatives
  • Employers should:
    • Produce, implement and communicate a mental-health-at-work plan
    • Develop mental-health awareness among employees
    • Encourage open conversations about mental health and the support available
    • Provide employees with good working conditions
    • Promote effective people management
    • Routinely monitor employees’ mental health and wellbeing
  • Larger employers should increase transparency through internal and external reporting and provide tailored in-house mental-health support
  • In the public sector:
    • Regulatory bodies should include employers’ handling of mental health in assessments
    • Senior leaders should have a performance objective of supporting mental health
    • NHS England should continue developing its Healthy Workforce programme
    • Employers should identify people at higher risk of stress or trauma and produce a national framework to support them
  • The Government should:
    • Form a mental-health online information portal to promote best practice
    • The Access to Work, Fit for Work and other NHS services should be aligned to create an integrated in-work support service
    • The Government should protect and promote the current tax reliefs for mental-health schemes
    • Legislate to enhance protections for employees with mental-health problems
    • Statutory sick pay should be more flexible to make a phased return to work easier
    • NHS bodies should provide clear ratings for apps and other digital platforms which provide mental-health support
    • Government and the NHS should improve patients’ access to their medical records so patients can share their data with employers should they wish to

Primary audience: Employers and managers, both public and private sector

Date last updated: November 2017

Due for review: November 2018

Group member responsible: JC

Shining a light: the future of public libraries across the UK and Ireland

Impact on library policy/practice: NHS libraries are being encouraged to partner with local library services; this report will give NHS librarians an understanding of the current public library landscape.  Central to the report is the theme of wellbeing (see page 9) which may be a useful way for NHS libraries to open a conversation with their local public library colleagues.  The report also encourages partnership working and clearly there is an opportunity for NHS and local authority libraries to work together to work towards the five recommendations laid out in the report.

An accompanying data booklet summarises ‘how people in the UK and Ireland use public libraries and what they think of them’ which could be of use for business cases, impact reports or understanding how to target local services.

Source: Carnegie UK Trust

Link to main document

Publication format: PDF

Date of publication: April 2017

Summary of driver: This report outlines how public libraries can continue to contribute to government policy goals and improve people’s wellbeing for many years in the future. The report presents recommendations drawn from research conducted by Carnegie into library use and attitudes towards library across the UK and Ireland.

Public libraries have the ability to contribute to individual and community wellbeing and to many of the priorities of local and national government.  Moving forward, library services and their advocates need to be future focused and outward looking, and resist the temptation to embrace a backwards-looking ethos.

Key features of driver: This report seeks to contribute to the debate by sharing the ‘state of play’ for public libraries in the UK and Ireland revealed by our research.  The reports sets our five recommendations (‘lessons’) for how libraries can continue to improve people’s wellbeing both in today’s political, economic and social context and into the future.

These lessons are as follows:

  1. Demonstrate value to policy makers, decision makers and funders to maximise public and other investment
  2. Increase focus on tailored, personalised services whilst maintaining a focus on delivering a universal service
  3. Accelerate the development of a user-centred, data rich service with a strong online presence
  4. Invest in innovation, leadership and outcomes-based partnerships (one point is ‘Local and national governments and voluntary organisations to explore the value of partnering with public libraries to deliver services and outcomes’)
  5. Enhance learning between libraries and across jurisdictions

Primary audience: Members of the public and public library stakeholders.

Date last updated: August 2017

Due for review: August 2018

Group member responsible: VT


DH Wellbeing and health policy

Source: Department of Health

Link to main document https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/wellbeing-and-health-policy

Publication format: PDF

Date of publication: 6th February 2014

Summary of driver: Evidence on why wellbeing matters to health throughout someone’s life, and what policy makers can do about it

Key features of driver: Important findings are that wellbeing:

•adds years to life and improves recovery from illness
•is associated with positive health behaviours in adults and childrens
•is associated with broader positive results
•influences the wellbeing and mental health of those close to us
•affects how staff and health care providers work with implications for decisions for patient care practises and services, and treatment decisions and costs
•affects decisions about local services
•may ultimately reduce the healthcare burden

Primary audience: All NHS Trust staff

Impact on library policy/practice: Publicise and display material in relation to wellbeing and health for staff. Signposting to relevant support services within workplace.

Date last updated: 6th March 2014

Due for review: 1 year

Group member responsible: LK