Last week was National Back Pain Week in the UK. There have been loads of interesting posts, pins, articles, comments and conversations that demonstrate just what an important topic back pain remains.
Over the last twenty years of working with people with back pain, I have seen a real awakening that treatment must involve an integrated and holistic approach to be most effective. The NICE guidelines, as every health professional will (or should) know, give a clear protocol for low back pain. Direct treatment on a painful restricted back is important, as is remaining active and addressing the psychological effects (NICE). Early intervention, for low back pain, that follows a similar protocol to that advocated by NICE, has been found to reduce sickness absence by 40% (The Work Foundation).
It is well understood now, that prevention is the best way forward.
More and more businesses are jumping on the logic wagon, knowing instinctively, from the hard science, that preventing ill health and injury is beneficial to the individuals, to their entourage, to the organisation in which they work, and to the wider community.
It’s proving a very wise decision.
Business in the Community, one of the Prince’s Charities, has growing numbers of businesses taking on the commitment to create healthy workplace cultures and practices, and to make their results known through transparent reporting.
Companies like British Gas for example have seen returns on their investment of 31:1. Thirty-one pounds saved for every pound spent on their staff wellbeing programme, which includes treatment for musculo-skeletal disorders like back pain. (bitc.org)
Last month, the 2015 Britain’s Healthiest Company awards, reported in The Telegraph, that companies with support the wellbeing of their staff can cut their wage bill for lost productivity in half from 10.7% to 5.9 per cent of the wage bill, compared with their less supportive competitors.
Back Pain is something 4 in 5 people experience, so it WILL affect the health of organisations.
What is needed is strategic wellbeing action that works to create the culture that makes a real difference. We, at Living in Flowmotion, do this by facilitating a process for people within organisations, to work together, be active, be mindful and have purpose.
When organisations do it, wellbeing is part of the fabric of the organisation.
When every organisation does it, wellbeing will spread round the whole community.
We give a great big pat on the healthy backs to all those organisations which took positive steps towards creating a wellbeing culture during Back Pain Week!
And for those that didn’t, we are ready to help you get started.