There was already a significant backlog of care running through the NHS before Covid struck, with many facing long and painful waits for vital surgery.
Latest figures show that almost 5 million people are now waiting for hospital treatment in England. Moreover, there is a growing â€œhidden waiting listâ€ made up of people who are putting off seeking help either after discovering symptoms of illness or just not wanting to come forward.
The lingering pain of delayed hip and knee replacements or cataract removals is clear, but so too is the impact of declining mental health, with estimates suggesting that one in four people with mental health problems has to wait at least three months to start NHS treatment, and some do not get help for four years.
In the workplace, this stark reality heavily impacts on the emotional and financial cost of absenteeism. Tackling any mental health issues your employees may be facing early on is key to supporting them â€“ and beleaguered HR teams.
Our Early Intervention initiative is a game-changing service that tackles employee issues from the first day, providing appropriate and effective help through specialist care.
Comprising four core elements (accessed individually or as a package), it offers employees a host of benefits including First Day Absence, Mental Health Support Services, Musculoskeletal (MSK) Services and Managed Healthcare Services.
Case Study: Chronic cluster headache syndrome
Through his employer, Robert W was advised to get in touch with our Managed Healthcare Services team to help him access treatment for his debilitating cluster headaches. He describes his case history:
â€œCluster headaches are recognised as one of the most painful conditions in humans. It has a nickname as the â€œsuicideâ€ headache, due to its severe and unrelenting attacks of pain.
In recent years I have been treated with occipital nerve blocks at the Royal Stoke University Hospital in order to reduce the quantity, length and potency of the attacks. I was then referred onto Worcester NHS Trust, but unfortunately due to Covid-19, somehow fell out of the system.
I started to suffer terribly with many attacks every day. Unable to function at work or at home, I spoke to my direct Line Manager and our senior OH Physician who then referred me onto BHSF.
I was contacted by phone on that day and they got me back to the Royal Stoke University Hospital in weeks.
Some patients have waited over 45 weeks to be treated again. BHSF managed to shorten this to 9 weeks. I was back at work soon after.â€