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NICE seeks views on new version of UK mental wellbeing at work guidelines

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The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has opened a consultation on the draft scope for its guidelines on mental wellbeing at work. The results will help to update and replace NICE’s 2009 guidelines.


The Mental wellbeing at work guide covers how to create the right conditions to support mental wellbeing at work. Its aim is to promote a culture of participation, equality and fairness in the workplace based on open communication and flexible working.

Why is this important?

In 2017, the Stevenson/Farmer review Thriving at work estimated that 15 per cent of UK workers have an existing mental health condition.

Workplace policies and activities to promote and protect employee mental health and wellbeing vary widely. Although there is some good work, employees with poor mental wellbeing are less likely to disclose it to an employer. If they do disclose it they are also less likely to feel supported than if they had a physical condition. NICE want to help employers do better.

Who are the guidelines for?

It is intended for employers, human resources or occupational health professionals, employees’ trade union representatives and members of the public.

Workplace policies and activities to promote and protect employee mental health and wellbeing vary widely

What topics is it inviting comment on?

NICE says that new evidence has emerged in the past ten years since its last guidelines, requiring topic areas to be reviewed. 

All areas of mental wellbeing at work covered in the guideline are open for review. But, specifically experts have identified areas for looking at anew, such as the role of line managers and their skills to deal with mental health and to support staff wellbeing.

Opportunities for promoting employees’ mental wellbeing and managing risks could also be updated to include therapies, such as mindfulness, cognitive behavioural therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, stress management, meditation and combination therapy interventions. Experts have recommended that the guideline should be updated on how far specific workplace interventions are associated – or not – with improvements in mental wellbeing and work-related outcomes.

When will it be ready?

The consultation opened on 12 August, and closes on 9 September. The guideline is expected to be published in August 2021. 

To register and enter your views, visit the website here

 

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