Research Looks at Health in the Workplace
12 August 2013 at 11:21 am
University of Melbourne researchers are working with employers, employees, unions and advocacy groups to promote positive mental health and suicide prevention in the workplace.
The Thriving Workplaces project study will assess an integrated approach to mental health by focusing on skills that prevent job stress, promote positive mental health and prevent work-related suicides.
A group of research specialists will examine an integrated mental health approach to reduce levels of workplace stress, improve wellbeing, and minimise suicide risk in the workplace.
The project builds on the complete state of mental health model developed by Professor Corey Keyes from Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia.
Dr Kathryn Page, Dr Allison Milner and Associate Professor Anthony LaMontagne, from the School of Population and Global Health are leading groundbreaking research in the field of workplace mental health in collaboration with SuperFriend, the Industry Funds Forum Mental Health Foundation.
The study will be conducted over the next few months and will involve a national survey of working Australians to determine their wellbeing and mental health.
Following the survey, focus groups and interviews will be conducted in three sectors – white collar, blue collar and service/retail industries – to build a more complete picture of the current environment.
The focus groups and interviews, consisting of employees and representatives from unions, executives and policy makers, will offer insight into workplace cultures and the key enablers and barriers to promoting good employee mental health.
Dr Page said they were looking to understand both the determinants and outcomes of mental health, with the long-term aim of creating work-based interventions that can increase well-being and reduce mental illness in the Australian working population.
“Employees need to find meaning in their work, attain a sense of fulfilment and engagement and have positive workplace relationships to experience workplace wellbeing,” she said.
“We also need to ensure that workplaces are psychologically healthy and safe in order for work to be good for employee mental health.”
This project will provide opportunity for members of SuperFriend’s Partner Funds, and their workplaces to participate in this groundbreaking research and intervention project.
For more information visit www.superfriend.com.au