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Physio promotes ‘healthy conversations’ about work

8 July 2015 - 2:46pm

A physiotherapy-led project in Greater Manchester is helping health and social care professionals have ‘healthy conversations’ about work with their patients.

Physio promotes ‘healthy conversations’ about work

Rachel Martin, senior lecturer in occupational therapy, and senior lecturer in physiotherapy Christine Parker

Christine Parker, senior lecturer in physiotherapy at the University of Salford, is joint lead of the initiative with Rachel Martin, a senior lecturer in occupational therapy at the university’s Wellness Works Centre.

They have developed a ‘healthy work conversations’ training programme, which has been delivered to 185 allied health professionals (AHPs) and psychological wellbeing practitioners in the Greater Manchester area.

Mrs Parker told Frontline: ‘The idea is to try to encourage practitioners to have early conversations about work that are positive and reinforcing, as research suggests that clinicians can be over-cautious with the advice they give.

‘Instead of sounding punitive or coercing people back to work we need to communicate that work is an option; that it can be good for your health and wellbeing and that sometimes being off work can be worse for you.

‘The key message is that work should be seen as an important part of the rehabilitation process, rather than being seen as something we do once we have rehabilitated.’

The project was commissioned by Greater Manchester Public Health Network, as part of their work for health programme. It received funding from Health Education North West and support from the Centre for Professional Workforce Development, the AHP Network and the Psychological Professions Network.

Mrs Parker said they are planning to widen the reach of the training and make it available to more health professionals.

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