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Northumberland manufacturing site named health and wellbeing ambassador

Tuesday, 16 August, 2016
Northumberland manufacturing site named health and wellbeing ambassador

A company’s Northumberland manufacturing site has been recognised with a prestigious health award.

Thermo Fisher Scientific’s manufacturing site in Cramlington has been awarded Ambassador Status in the Better Health at Work Award (BHAWA) in recognition of its dedication to health and wellbeing, both for staff and the surrounding community.

The Better Health at Work Award (BHAWA) is a partnership workplace health initiative supported by the region’s 12 Local Authorities, the NHS, and coordinated by the Northern Trades Union Congress (TUC). More than 300 employers in the north east participated in the BHAWA last year, covering more than 190,000 employees.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust health improvement specialist Steven Chater supports businesses in Northumberland to achieve the award.

Steven said: “Thermo Fisher Scientific has shown a real commitment to health and wellbeing, going above and beyond what is expected of them, both in the workplace and in the wider community.

“In addition to the range of health support offered to staff, their health advocate has also acted as a mentor for other organisations sharing experience and lessons learned, and developed community initiatives such as helping with a local allotment.

“I am delighted that their dedication has been recognised with this achievement and I would encourage other employers to take part in the free Better Health at Work Award.”

The criteria to achieve the awards includes establishing staff ‘health advocates’, providing support to help staff stop smoking, creating a better awareness of how health can be affected by work activities, asking staff what health issues they would like help with and running subsequent health improvement campaigns to address the most popular topics. At the higher levels organisations are required to promote health within their wider community and to families of the workforce.

Ann Woollett has been the lead health advocate for Thermo Fisher Scientific’s Cramlington site for seven years. During that time she has organised five health campaigns each year, arranged on-site health checks for staff, set up a running group which meets twice a week, and introduced sport ‘taster days’ so staff can try out new activities for free.

Ann said: “Management is 100% supportive of giving our staff as much help as we can to maintain and improve their health and wellbeing.

“We also have regular contact with Northumbria’s health improvement team who are always happy to provide support as well as visiting the site to offer health checks for staff.

“We are currently in the process of setting up a focus group to give even more staff the opportunity to get involved in our health and wellbeing initiatives.”

Any employer can take part in the free Better Health at Work Award. For more information visit

Or contact Steven Chater, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust Health Improvement Practitioner Specialist on 01670 840891.