New scheme helps you to keep working well

There is well-documented evidence that being in work can be good for your health.

As well as the financial rewards, being in work can boost your self-esteem, keep you busy and help you to form relationships with other people. And these benefits can help with your mental wellbeing.

But when you have time off work, or even have to leave your job, due to illness or injury it can be difficult to rebuild your confidence.

Often delays in the correct support can prevent you from returning as quickly as you’d like.

We aren’t as fortunate as our Scandinavian neighbours, where they have an enviable work/life balance and help is available in a matter of days.

However, a new scheme that has just launched across Greater Manchester is a tremendous step forward in highlighting the advantages of staying in work or returning to work if you have a health condition or disability.

The ‘Working Well, Early Help’ programme offers free support to people who are working, absent or newly unemployed due to health reasons.

It will help employers reduce sickness absence and support GPs in helping patients to return to work if they’ve been off sick. Both can refer you to the scheme.

Better still, you can refer yourself and access personalised support which will help with your health and wellbeing, assistance in the workplace – such as special adaptions or adjustments – plus help in finding work, with information about skills, education and training.

There is a dedicated website: where you can fill in a simple form and someone will get in touch. Alternatively, you can email: or call to speak to someone directly: 0300 456 8107.

I think this is a great initiative which will help people with both physical and mental health issues, and I’m pleased to say that we are supporting this in Bolton.

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