Men’s Health Week originated in the USA in 1994 and has since spread to countries around the world. Men’s Health Week is about providing access and information about services and treatment, men and boys, might need to live a healthy life. This year Men’s Health Week falls between 12th-18th June.

The week is dedicated to shining a light on health concerns impacting men, such as the fact that men are 67% more likely to die from common cancers, and to encourage men to take charge of their wellbeing and make informed decisions about their lifestyle.

It’s important as an employer to engage with all employees about health and lifestyle initiatives and services, but this week is about honing the focus on the male workforce.

How should my business approach Men’s Health Week?

There are many different ways to participate in Men’s Health Week.

• If your business offers health insurance, encourage your employees to seek out a health check-up. If not, consider if a health check up could be provided by the business.

• Sign post your male employees to services they can use.

• Provide reliable and balanced information on health and lifestyle where you can. Utilise social media, newsletters or NHS leaflets.

• Have a guest speaker come in and speak to your employees about Men’s Health Week and provide educational sessions on health and wellbeing.

• Allow time for activities that promote health and wellbeing like exercise, healthy eating, support groups and medical appointments.

• Support other men’s health organisations through donations or volunteer work or allow employees time to do so.

• Don’t exclude anyone. Although this week is about men, women are mothers, wives and friends who might like to support or benefit from information shared, to support their families or wider community.

What services are available?

There are many services available that aren’t targeted directly at men, such as GP visits, Samaritans and the NHS website. Below are some services aimed at men directly.

ManHealth – Men’s Mental Health Charity.

Men’s Health Forum – Full Body MOT.

NHS “Can Do” Challenge. Five things to help you feel better.

Kooth is a digital, anonymous mental health and wellbeing support site where users can chat, email or text with qualified support professionals.

• You could also refer your employees to your company EAP scheme, if you have one.

It’s vital the week celebrates and empowers men’s health.

Men tend to have more difficulty reaching out about health and wellbeing issues with over 40% of men saying it would take suicidal thoughts or self-harm before they consider speaking to someone.

Therefore, creating a positive impact where we can, is a great way to raise awareness and foster open conversations that enable men to take control of their mental and physical wellbeing.

To encourage men to speak up about their mental and physical health, it’s important to create a comfortable environment, ensure trust and confidentiality and if possible, include a personal touch so your male workforce know they can open up.

It could also be a good idea to have both male and female mental health and normal first aiders, to ensure employees can go to whoever their preference might be.

How Hallidays HR can help

If you would like to discuss any of the above in more detail, then please do not hesitate to contact us.