September 29, 2008

NHS Plus Network Awarded First National Occupational Health Service Contract

LONDON, September 29 /PRNewswire/ -- NHS Plus and NHS Direct today announced the NHS Plus network has won its first national contract to provide occupational health services. Led by Health at Work at Imperial College, in partnership with 31 NHS Plus network members, the new national contract will deliver consistently high-quality occupational health services to NHS Direct, the world's leading provider of tele-healthcare information and advice.

Kit Harling, Director, NHS Plus said: "NHS Plus and its network is setting a new standard for delivery of occupational health services across the country and winning the NHS Direct contract is a major milestone in this effort."

NHS Direct handles over 28.5 million contacts a year and employs 3,200 people operating from 37 sites in 9 English regions. Ensuring the health and well-being of its staff is essential to its success and improving the patient experience.

Andrew Kelly, National Head of HR Policy and ER for NHS Direct, said: "Taking care of our people is mission critical - we simply can't provide the highest level of patient care without them. Awarding the contract to NHS Plus ensures they will receive the highest quality occupational health services from a name we can trust."

The NHS Plus network, led by Health at Work at Imperial College, will provide occupational health services for the NHS Direct workforce across England. NHS Plus' new model will guarantee all NHS Direct staff are treated to a national standard of service - consistently delivered across their 37 sites.

Sue Carty, General Manager, Health at Work at Imperial College, said: "With our NHS Plus network partners, we've developed a national model to deliver world class occupational health services that will meet the needs of NHS Direct and their staff both now and in the future."

NHS Plus

As part of the Government's Health, Work and Wellbeing Strategy, NHS Plus promotes the benefits of good health at work. Operating through a network of over 100 NHS Occupational Health units across England, NHS Plus helps build healthy and productive workforces.

NHS Direct

NHS Direct's aim is to provide people with expert health advice, information and reassurance to care for themselves at home or access appropriate healthcare, using world class telephone, website and digital TV services.

Health at Work at Imperial College NHS Trust

As a member of the NHS Plus network, Health at Work at Imperial College NHS Trust provides evidence based and business focused occupational healthcare to meet the needs of today's businesses' and their workforces.

   For further information contact:    Michelle Denton, NHS Plus,   +44(0)7834-315-328;    Ann Grain, NHS Direct,   +44(0)7876-596-932  

NHS Plus

CONTACT: For further information contact: Michelle Denton, NHS Plus,+44(0)7834-315-328; Ann Grain, NHS Direct, +44(0)7876-596-932