compromise the health of employees

Employees spend many hours of their week at work, and therefore their surroundings within the workplace will have an effect on a person. Whether this is positive or negative. But when an effect is negative, this can lead to reduced productivity, performance, and even absences. 

That’s why Occupational Health plays a vital role in ensuring workers are healthy and safe whilst they are at work, whether this is identifying potential risks, or completing necessary assessments to ensure a worker can return to work safely after an absence. 


HSE Statistics 


Unfortunately, due to the effects of the covid-19 pandemic, data for the working days lost in 2020/21 isn’t available. However, the data is available for 2019/20. 

The Health and Safety Executive reports that in 2019/20 there were 38.8 million working days lost due to non-fatal workplace injuries and work-related ill health. With stress, depression, and anxiety accounting for 17.9 million of these days, and with musculoskeletal disorders accounting for 8.9 million days. 

On average, a worker took around 17.6 days off work. 

Businesses can be affected in various ways by the number of working days lost. Including decreased productivity, reduced service delivery, loss of morale, potential loss of business reputation, cost of business interruption, legal and administrative costs, plus sick payments. 


HSE and the Law 


The Law states that a risk assessment should be ‘suitable and sufficient’, and should contain details regarding the risks involved which are relevant to the nature of the work. 

Risk assessments should: 

  • Display that proper checks were made 
  • Identify who could potentially be affected by the risks 
  • Show that significant risks were dealt with, and identified who could be affected 
  • Prove that precautions taken were reasonable and the remaining risk is low 
  • Show that workers were involved in the process 

However, if employers fail to comply with the requirements set by the HSE, there could be serious consequences. Including fines, sanctions, imprisonment, and disqualification for both individuals and organisations. In 2020/21 alone, £26.9 million was collected in fines from prosecutions by the HSE when a conviction was achieved. 

Read more on the HSE legislation and the legal responsibilities of employers


How Occupational Health can help 



Occupational health as prevention 


Risk assessments, medicals, and advice provided are all designed to prevent and decrease the potential risk workers are exposed to. Therefore reducing the possibility of staff injury and absence. 

Utilising pre-placement questionnaires when hiring employees is a great example of prevention. This assessment will ensure that any medical conditions or ailments are identified, and can be supported from day one. Therefore preventing ill health in the future. Our pre-placement medicals cost just £16 and take just 10 minutes for a clinician to assess and grade them… 

In addition, company culture plays a big role in absence rates and employee productivity. An open and inclusive workplace creates a comfortable environment where workers can discuss and raise concerns they may have. Which often highlights potential issues before they have a big impact. Stress awareness training can help employees to identify signs of stress within themselves and others, and raise these issues which can be solved earlier on. 


Choosing Acorn for your Occupational Health services 


At Acorn we understand that Occupational Health can sometimes be pushed to the back of the queue, but the health and safety of employees is such an important aspect of running a successful business. 

We offer flexible action plans based on the business needs and budget. For example, we can spread your health surveillance over a 2 or 3-month period, instead of completing all assessments in 1 month. Whilst ensuring that all needed surveillance is completed on time as it is a legal requirement. 

In addition, when you become a client of Acorn and sign a contract, we freeze our prices for you depending on how long you sign up. This gives you peace of mind that prices of our occupational health services will not increase when in a contract and we will always find the most cost-effective way to ensure efficiency. 

We also provide lateral flows for free to all companies who require spirometry assessments. Which saves money but also ensures the safety of workers regarding their respiratory lung function. 


Contact Us 


If you’d like to know more about how our occupational health services can benefit your business, and potentially save you money in the long run, please get in touch. Visit our FAQs page, call us at 01260 277797, or email us at

Want to know more about the Occupational Health services we provide at Acorn, and how they could benefit your business and your employees? Please get in touch.