Health and wellbeing is vital to enabling the NHS to deliver high standards of quality and good patient outcomes. In a sector where staff face an increased pressure to perform with limited resources, a proactive approach is needed support their health and wellbeing.

Sheffield Hallam University (SHU) has an award-winning workplace health promotion programme including individualised health and fitness assessments, lifestyle management advice, one-to-one coaching and educational workshops to raise awareness on topics including exercise, healthy eating, mental wellbeing and resilience.

The SHU Wellness programme was implemented within the NHS and in the first year was piloted across three NHS trusts. In years two and three a value-for-money, sustainable delivery model was designed and implemented via a ‘train the practitioner’ programme.

To date the programme has trained 78 practitioners from large organisations across the public and private sectors to deliver the SHU Wellness service, including 30 NHS practitioners spread across 10 trusts in the Yorkshire and Humber region.


  • Significant improvements were observed in a broad range of physiological, mental health and lifestyle variables.
  • After only six months, the programme demonstrated a significant reduction in cardiovascular disease factors within participants in the ‘at risk’ category. This included waist circumference, total cholesterol, blood pressure, physical activity and cardiorespiratory fitness. Significant improvements in mental wellbeing were also reported.
  • Staff feedback was also extremely positive – 95% reported making positive changes to their health or lifestyle, including exercise, healthy eating, weight management, reduced alcohol, mental wellbeing, back care and quitting smoking, 97% rated their experience of the wellbeing programme was excellent or very good and 98% agreed that it would be a valuable workplace benefit.