Staff Training As A Workplace Health Intervention

Understanding and managing human
risk factors in moving and handling
activities: promoting and improving health at
work through effective training
Siân Edwards RNA, MSc, Dip OH, Tech IOSH, MIIRSM
Sedoha Workplace Health Limited
DLF Moving & Handling People Conference 27-28th January 2015, London
The case for training
• 1/3 of reportable accidents each year are related to manual handling with back
pain and musculoskeletal injuries and conditions commonly linked to manual
handling (approximately 200,000 in 2013/14)
• Legal and moral requirement to protect the health and safety of employees
(HASAWA 1974)
• HSE recommends comprehensive programmes to reduce risk from manual handling
to include RISK ASSESSMENT (avoid, assess, reduce), TRAINING, and good manual
handling techniques
• OH&S based on overlapping spheres of health protection, health promotion and
health education
The Well Designed Training Programme
• Includes principles of safe manual handling
• Is practical and tailored to the workplace so that workers have confidence that they
really can apply the principles of keeping themselves safe in their actual workplace
with their specific types of loads
styles and needs
• Prevents injury or ill-health, protects health, provides health education
• Engages the individual in the process of risk assessment as well as knowledge of safe
manual handling techniques
Theories – behaviour change
• Stages of change
• Pre-contemplation
• Contemplation
• Preparation
• Action
• Relapse
Theories – behaviour change 2
• Health belief models
• Hazard appraisal
• Threat-related beliefs (perception of the severity and likelihood of negative health effect)
• Decision making
• Self-efficacy (perceived ability to make the behaviour change)
• Initiation
• Response efficacy (perceived effect of the behaviour change in reducing the risk of the negative
health effect)
• Adherence
• Facilitating conditions and safety climate (benefits and cost of making the change)
Barriers and cues to action
• Attitudes and beliefs of both managers and employees
• Why people do not use the knowledge they gain to change the way they do things
• Why the provision of lifting and handling aids does not guarantee that they will be
• Balancing employee safety with the need to “get the job done”
• Individual willingness to change
• Senior staff commitment
• The most effective people to effect the change
Case study
• E-learning module with multiple
choice test
• Practical manual handling training
sessions in mixed groups of up to 15
• Health risks of manual handling
• Revision of e-learning
• Health education including self-care
• Practical work in variety of work areas
• Manual handling techniques
• Lifting aids
• Engaged workers in TILE risk assessments
and in applying practical solutions to
each others problems
• TILE approach to risk assessment
• Took account of various learning styles
• A well designed training programme is an essential part of the broader
approach to minimising risk from manual handling (and particularly people
handling) alongside risk assessment and good manual handling techniques
• The well designed training programme can promote health in the workplace
through the overlapping spheres of prevention, protection and health education
• The well designed training programme should be grounded in theory but
delivered in practice so that it is fully tailored to the needs of the individuals in
the specific workplace
Edwards, S. (2012) Cutting health risks through manual handling training Occupational Health
Health and safety at work etc. act 1974 (HASAWA)
Health and Safety Executive manual handling webpages
Health and Safety Statistics 2013/14
Tannahill, A (2009) The Tannahill Model revisited Public Health
Contact me at [email protected] or 07986699986