MEDICAL diagnostics company Hart Biologicals has been commended by Hartlepool Council after earning its Bronze Better Health at Work Award.

The company, that began the initiative last year, kicked off with Dry January encouraging its staff to take part in three chosen campaigns across the year.

Jason Pattison who heads up the initiative alongside Elizabeth Sullivan is delighted at the team’s progress and can’t wait to get started in 2016.

He said: “We’ve already had our meeting to kick-start 2016 activities and we have some exciting campaigns to run, working towards our Silver award.

“Last year we focused on Dry January, the pedometer Challenge and also supported World Thrombosis Day, so we’re already looking at different campaigns including Healthy Heart Checks and mental health awareness activities to get all the staff involved.

“The campaigns definitely have people talking and it’s been great to bring the team together. Last year we separated our pedometer challenge into department teams and it really got us all involved.

“There’s so much out there available to businesses its great that this scheme lets us get organised and really focus on our health.”

To work towards its Silver award Hart Biologicals is required to send a lifestyle survey out to all its employees to best determine what campaigns will best suit the company.

This year Hart Biologicals is aiming to complete four health campaigns, concentrating on mental health and stress. The company is also looking into running a healthy heart campaign.

Steven Carter, Health Improvement Practitioner at Hartlepool Borough Council, said: “Hart Biologicals have made great strides with their employee wellbeing activities since signing up to the North East Better Health at Work Bronze Award in August 2014. 

“As part of the bronze award criteria, the organisation conducted a Health Needs Assessment of the workforce, to establish which health topics and issues are important to staff. 

“As a result, a number of campaigns have been developed in the workplace to engage and educate staff about health and wellbeing, including alcohol awareness as part of the national ‘Dry January’ campaign, healthy eating (providing ‘honesty bowls’ of fruit for staff for a small donation), cancer awareness information and physical activity challenges such as the Cancer Research UK Race for Life and most recently a walking challenge using stepometers from Hartlepool Borough Council’s Public Health Department, who also coordinate the Better Health at Work Award locally, which is free to businesses in Hartlepool.”