Cash bonus for NHS trust if staff stand up in meetings

One NHS trust has launched an initiative to make long meetings a little healthier (and perhaps more bearable) for staff members.

standing meeting

Staff at a hospital in Bedfordshire must now stand up in meetings for at least two minutes every hour. Doing so could help the trust get up to £900,000 in extra funding.

Extra funding is available to every trust in the country - but only if they hit targets set to improve the health of their staff. How trusts hit these targets is largely up to them.

Other initiatives across the UK have included access to fitness classes like Zumba and yoga, the banning of unhealthy food, and the promotion of the flu vaccination.

Trusts that hit 'health and wellbeing' targets can claim a bonus of up to 2.5% of their NHS earnings from a £600 million fund.

When he announced the scheme last year, NHS chief executive Simon Stevens said the health service needs to - "do our bit to end the nation's obesity epidemic'.

Currently 25% of Brits are obese. That's compared to a European average of 16.7%. Recent figures show that Britain is now set to be the fattest county in Europe by 2025.

Bedford Hospital Trust has now stipulated that 'all meetings lasting longer than one hour would require attendees to stand after an hour had passed'. This is to target the problem of sedentary working faced by millions of office workers across the UK.

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Whether we're in meetings, or sitting at our desks working on computers, it's all too easy to forget to get up and move around. This can significantly increase the risk of obesity, heart problems, diabetes, musculoskeletal disorders and premature death.

Simply getting up to stretch your legs once an hour can limit the risks associated with sedentary working. At Posturite we call this method of working 'active working' and it involves all kinds of ways to feed more activity into day-to-day office life, including:

For more ideas on how to implement an active work culture, head to our active working page >>