Additional support and government funding have been announced through 19 innovative projects. These 19 projects all aim to help people with health conditions stay in work and manage their condition in work too. The Work and Health Challenge Fund has a pot of £4 million which will be distributed between the 19 successful projects.
The fund comes through a long-term government strategy to get one million more disabled people in work by 2027.
Who Will Receive Support?
The successful projects to receive funding have been announced. They include a phone app that allows patients to self-manage lower back pain; another project is for an app which helps people to understand the signs of mental health as well as receiving access to a Vocational Rehabilitation advisor.
Some of the teams to receive funding include; Bristol City Council – Future Bright: Health and Work, Bath Spa University – Healthier Outcomes at Work, Keele University – I-SWAP and Possibility People.
Why Is The Fund Important?
The goal of all of the successful projects is to help people stay in work longer through better self-management of their conditions as well as ensuring there is easier access to support. The government also expects to utilise these projects by gaining feedback from people with health conditions. This can then help to develop future policy based on the experience of disabled people in work.
The Work and Health Challenge Fund primarily focuses on mental health and musculoskeletal conditions and is an initiative set by both the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department for Health and Social Care. Sarah Newton, the Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, explains; “We want to harness the power of technology to tackle the disability employment gap, and these novel ideas will help us to achieve our goal of seeing one million more disabled people in work.”
Jackie Doyle-Price, the Minister for Mental Health also adds; “Physical and mental health should have parity in the workplace and today’s announcement takes us one step closer to achieving our ambition for better mental health for all. I look forward to seeing how this fund transforms people’s lives by maximising the benefits technology has to offer.”