Expert advises steady approach to workplace health promotion

A co-ordinated approach to workplace health promotion leads to a planned and comprehensive set of programmes, policies, benefits, and environmental support designed to meet the health and safety needs of all employees, a seminar at Qatar University (QU) was told. 
QU-College of Health Sciences (QU-CHS) assistant professor of public health Dr Fahad Hanna was speaking on “The need for workplace health promotion: approaches and models for implementation”.
The seminar, which engaged a group of students, faculty and staff from QU Health colleges, aligned with the Luxembourg Declaration 1997 that defines workplace health promotion (WHP) as the combined efforts of employers, employees and society to improve the health and well-being of people at work. 
The event aimed to raise the community awareness on the epidemiological, demographic, economic and health transitions occurring in Qatar. 
Dr Hanna noted that health promotion is a key strategy in improving health of a population. He stressed the importance of having sustainable programmes within the worksite to prevent chronic diseases such as hypertension. 
“Worksite interventions can include a wide variety of health promotion activities because employees spend a large portion of their waking hours at work and eat a large percentage of their food there. 
“Cost effective interventions include educating employees by conducting regular health promotion activities, screening them for behavioural and underlying risk factors, such as hypertension, diabetes and other chronic disease, offering incentive programmes to walk/exercise and implement healthy policies within the worksite.” 
CHS dean and Biomedical Research Centre director Dr Asma al-Thani described the seminar as an activity that demonstrates the college’s efforts to uplift its staff and students academically and to engage them on issues that are of the interest of the wider community. 
“The college is keen to invest in programmes that support active and healthy lifestyles within Qatar’s community, and providing the ultimate support to the country’s healthcare sector is part of our mission, which covers all the residents in Qatar in general and employees in particular.”

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