Welcome to our July bulletin


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Dear Colleagues

Thank you to those Services who have ‘signed up’ to the Network over the last few months – we’ve had a brilliant response yet again this year!  The Network is a great way for us to keep in touch, and share good and developing practice, and really critical in this forthcoming year as the importance of good quality Occupational Health is certainly on the national NHS agenda. 

We have been firming up the arrangements for our annual conference in September – please see the item below for more details.  This is shaping up to be a really good and informative event, so make sure the dates are in your diary.  We are planning on meeting each other physically on this occasion so I look forward to seeing so many familiar faces. 

After a surreal year for our Services, I really do hope you all have chance to rest and recuperate over these summer months. 

Best wishes

Hilary Winch

Chair, NHS Health at Work Network


In this edition:

1. Annual Conference – 14 & 15 September

2. FOM Statement on Covid-19 Vaccination and Risk Assessment

3. To Boost, or Not to Boost?

4. MoHaWK Round 19 Launches 1 July

Advertorial: Plan Your Flu Campaign With Flu-Track

5. Free Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Webinar

6. HSE Update

7. NMC Consultation on Draft Post-Reg Standards for OH

8. HAVS Calculator

9. Useful Resources


1.    NHS Health at Work Network Annual Conference – 14th & 15th September, 2021

A date for your diaries – the 14th and 15th September will see our planned face-to-face Annual Conference at the Chesford Grange Centre in Warwickshire.  We are delighted to have secured Dr. Steve Boorman and Professor Diana Kloss as two of our key speakers, and a range of inspiring other case study presentations.

For all those Trusts which have renewed their Network membership to include a conference place, you will shortly receive an e-mail from us confirming your conference place.  

Whilst the 24-hour delegate places have now all sold out, day delegate conference places are still available at £245, with discounts available for all Full and Associate Networks Members.  Please get in touch with admin@nhshealthatwork.co.uk if you’d like to book a place.

 2.             FOM Statement: Covid-19 Vaccination and Risk Assessment

The COVID vaccination programme, a crucial part of the UK’s response to the pandemic, is proceeding at pace. Despite the challenges posed by the emergence of variants of concern, there is now a definite shift of public focus towards a wider return to the workplace. This means increased direct, rather than remote, personal contacts, following appropriate risk assessment.  The Faculty of Occupational Medicine’s position is summarised here:

COVID-19 vaccination and risk assessment 

3.    To Boost, or Not To Boost?

In the last few weeks a number of Services have approached the Network regarding the consistency in practice in relation to the Hepatitis B five year booster. Confusion has arisen as the published Green Book chapter still indicates to administer the booster dose. 

We have been in touch with Public Health England to gain clarification. Their response is as follows:

“The Hepatitis B updated chapter has been drafted but as yet not published.  Therefore in terms of the 5 year booster dose, the information in the document linked should continue to be followed.

Under the heading ‘Booster doses in healthcare workers’ this stipulates:

“On the advice of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), boosters (priority group 5) will no longer be routinely required in healthy, immunocompetent adults who have completed a primary course of vaccine, including healthcare workers who are known responders”.

4.    MoHaWK - Round 19 Opens on 1st July 

As per previous rounds we will leave this open until the commencement of the following round as this appears to have worked well for many Services who are still balancing work demands associated with the pandemic. This process allows greater flexibility for when you submit your data.

Please find enclosed the briefing notes for Round 19 attached to this message and is also located on the Mohawk website.  If you have any specific queries then do make contact via hilary.winch@nnuh.nhs.uk



Starting to plan your flu campaign?  

It’s that time of year again when you’ll be starting to plan your flu campaign. Flu vaccination is more important than ever this year to keep your staff and patients safe through what is likely to be another difficult winter.  As social distancing measures are relaxed, flu may make a resurgence especially as immunity levels are likely to be lower this year.For those of you who’ve experienced running flu campaigns you’ll know that they are complex to plan and organise and take up a lot of time and resource. In fact, Trusts report the same recurring challenges every year:

  • Creating and maintaining an up-to-date list of staff to be vaccinated
  • Working out who is and isn’t frontline
  • Communicating with staff to invite and also remind them to book their vaccination
  • Making it quick and easy for staff to access vaccination clinics
  • Recording staff who have been vaccinated elsewhere or wish to decline, and if so, why
  • Quickly identifying ‘at risk’ groups not engaging with vaccination
  • Paper based consent and vaccination details which can get lost and are slow to be manually recorded.
  • Reporting internally, regionally and nationally especially into ImmForm and NIVS

Instead of using paper based processes alongside complicated spreadsheets, several Trusts have found that using a seamless digital system has dramatically eased the burden of all these problems. The only complete solution is a cloud-based system called FluTrack which address all these challenges.  Created by healthcare workers, it has been specifically designed for NHS flu vaccination campaigns and, as a result, it’s not just another off the shelf booking or reporting system.  FluTrack caters for all nuances of a healthcare worker flu campaign from start to finish. 

In fact, all Trusts that used FluTrack last year saw an increase in their uptake. They significantly reduced their admin and reporting time and they vaccinated their staff quicker. And it’s clear that staff like having a quick and easy booking system, especially one which consistently reminds them if they forget to book.  FluTrack saves time, reduces costs and improves performance. 

Last year, one FluTrack user said “I wouldn’t run another flu campaign without FluTrack”.

You can find out more about FluTrack or request a demo at www.qh-solutions.com/flutrack

This advertorial was brought to you by Quantum Health Solutions


5.    Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Webinar

Athena are running a free webinar for occupational health professionals exploring the evidence available to guide occupational health professionals.  The webinar is being held on Wednesday 21 July, 16.00 – 17.00.  To book your place please follow the link here

6.    HSE Update

It is vital that workplaces continue to be COVID-secure following completion of a COVID risk assessment that is updated regularly.  You should also talk to your workers and involve them in the measures you’re putting in place when making your workplace COVID-secure.

Further information on spot checks and inspections is available on the HSE website.

7.    NMC Consultation on Draft Post-Registration Standards for Community & Public Health Nurses, including OH

The NMC has launched their consultation building on ambitions for community and public health nursing. This looks at the new draft post-registration standards for the next generation of community and public health nurses working in health and social care, including schools and workplaces. These draft standards, which have been coproduced with subject experts, will provide the right proficiencies these professionals need to support and care for people in a rapidly changing world. 

You can find out more about the consultation on the NMC website. You can download the draft standards and all the supporting information. And when you’re ready to respond, you can head to the online survey.  The consultation will run until Monday 2 August 2021.  

8.    Hand Arm Vibration Resources and Calculator

Hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS) can be caused by using hand-held power tools for prolonged periods of time.  It is a painful, disabling disease of the hands affecting blood vessels, nerves and joints.

Employers should take a look at the HSE’s HAVS website to find out what you need to do to prevent this painful disease.  It includes key messages and resources including the hand-arm vibration calculator

HSE's guidance book Hand-arm vibration (L140) covers the management and control of the risks from exposure and how to protect employees.

Download or purchase a copy of Hand-arm vibration (L140).

9.    Useful Resources, Articles and Research

The Society of Occupational Medicine have published a range of relevant blogs from Getting the best out of teams | The Society of Occupational Medicine (som.org.uk) to Global Leadership in Occupational and Workplace Health | The Society of Occupational Medicine (som.org.uk) and Leadership in Occupational Health | The Society of Occupational Medicine (som.org.uk) and also SOM Mentoring Scheme: An opportunity for professional development | The Society of Occupational Medicine


The NHS Health at Work Network brings together all OH teams providing health and wellbeing services to NHS OH staff.  It is dedicated to providing consistent, high quality health at work services to all NHS staff through collaborative working.

Members of OH teams in NHS Health at Work Network member organisations can receive the bulletin and access the restricted areas of the website as a membership benefit – if you are not sure of your login details email admin@nhshealthatwork.co.uk   

Please share this bulletin with colleagues and encourage them to register to receive it regularly.  Non-Network members can also register to receive the monthly bulletin here.

You can contact the Network through your regional representative or as shown below.  Please get in touch if you have any queries or comments, if there is anything you would like to see in future issues of the bulletin, or if you have news to share.

Hilary Winch, Chair                                             hilary.winch@nnuh.nhs.uk                                          

Andrew Gilbey, Network Manager                       admin@nhshealthatwork.co.uk  

Postal address: NHS Health at Work, PO Box 857, York YO31 6FR