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Workplace health advice services available to small businesses

Workplace Health Connect Pilot - report published

The HSE has today, published the independent evaluation report into its Workplace Health Connect Pilot.

You can find out more about the findings of the report and access it at Workplace Health Connect Pilot - Evaluation Findings

Healthy Workplaces Milton Keynes pilot project

Launched in February 2008, the Healthy Workplaces MK pilot service, for small and medium sized businesses in Milton Keynes, has now come to its planned end, with the service closing on Friday 3 April 2009.

Although the website and telephone number are no longer operational, dutyholders will be aware that it is a joint HSE / Milton Keynes Council initiative and can refer to Milton Keynes Council's Environmental Health Dept. on 01908 252398.

What was Workplace Health Connect?

Workplace Health Connect was a two-year pilot service which was funded, managed and quality controlled by HSE, but independently delivered. It was designed to give advice on workplace health, safety and return-to-work issues, to small and medium sized businesses (with between 5 to 250 workers) in England and Wales. Delivered by contractors in partnership with the HSE, the pilot took place between February 2006 and February 2008. All advice given by Workplace Health Connect was free, confidential and practical.

A description of the Workplace Health Connect service

  • The principal point of contact with the service was the Workplace Health Connect Adviceline. Open during normal weekday working hours, the Adviceline gave detailed and tailored advice to callers on workplace health, safety and return-to-work issues. Available nationally in England and Wales, both employers and workers were able to access this Adviceline. (The Adviceline was also known as Level 1 of the service)
  • A problem-solving visit service was available to employers in four specific regions of England (the West Midlands, Greater London, the North West and the North East) and also available nationally in Wales. Where appropriate, employers calling the Adviceline were referred to the visit service, which would provide more in-depth advice on workplace health, safety and return-to-work issues via two visits – an initial visit and a follow-up visit.This element of the service was provided by regional contractors in partnership with HSE. (Level 2, also known as the Pathfinders)
  • Where appropriate, businesses were signposted to local approved specialists who could help them solve any long-term/more complicated problems. These support specialists included physiotherapists, ergonomists, engineers, occupational health professionals, hygienists and occupational health nurses. The involvement of Workplace Health Connect ended at this point and involvement with these organisations was entirely at the discretion of the business. (Level 3)

The overriding aim throughout all levels of Workplace Health Connect was to transfer knowledge to employers and workers in small and medium sized businesses and provide them with the skills to tackle and solve any current and future workplace health problems.

What Workplace Health Connect achieved

After two years of operations, the Workplace Health Connect pilot had:

  • Handled over 8,600 calls to the Adviceline
  • Held over 5,400 initial visits, exceeding its visits target of 4,750 initial visits
  • Held over 4,200 follow-up visits
  • Had a positive impact on nearly 125,000 workers, exceeding its target of 95,000 workers

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