Icarus Blog


Welcome to the Icarus Blog

Health and Wellbeing Programmes

Companies often wish to implement health and wellbeing programmes for employees, but the actual benefits of these to health may be small.

There is now compelling evidence that inequality and social class have major impacts on health, and addressing these issues are likely to be far more important to worker health. this document  explores the evidence. (Click on the word "document," in red).

Government tax break for Occupational Health

The Government has announced that as part of its new “Fit to Work” initiative, the Government has introduced, from 1 January 2015, a tax exemption of up to £500 (per year, per employee) on medical treatments recommended to help their employees return to work.  This exemption will apply to treatments recommended by health professionals within Fit for Work and also health professionals within employer-arranged occupational health services.  The exemption should be helpful in encouraging employers to pay for treatments so that employees return to work at an earlier stage than is often the case at the moment which should in turn lead to a cost saving. 
The exemption applies to employer arranged occupational health services, so let me know if you need help with an assessment!

Assessments of incapacity using a biopsychosocial approach

Occupational Medicine Journal has published an article I wrote, exploring the assessment of individuals' ability to work using a biopsychosocial approach.

This article is based on a presentation I gave at the Association of Local Authority Medical Examiners Spring Conference in 2013. Approximately 70 occupational physicians voted electronically on various case scenarios. 

Generally, there was very good consensus that occupational physicians must consider psychological and social factors when making decisions about incapacity, and cannot simply rely on a medical understanding of the problem. 

You can access the article online by clicking here, and the abstract here.

Getting the most out of occupational health

I co-wrote an article for personnel today recently, with Brett Edwards, MD of Corporate Health Ltd.

The article gives advice to managers on how to get the best from their OH service. You can read the article here

Graded activity programmes

Many individuals with chronic fatigue and/or chronic pain get stuck in a cycle of 'boom and bust.' On good days, they do a lot. But they then pay for this in the coming days, where they can cope with very little. Inevitably for many, they eventually reduce their activity levels to a minimum, to avoid the 'bust' days. But this leaves them with really low levels of activity, which is highly demoralising. 

There is now very good evidence that graded activity programmes can be very helpful. This is where the individual builds up their activities in a very controlled way, thereby avoiding the 'boom and bust' cycle. You can access advice on how to design and implement such a programme here, or from our resources page.

The benefits and pitfalls of a GP report

I wrote an article for Corporate Health's marketing team in July 2013, outlining the pros and cons of seeking a GP report, rather than an OH assessment. 

You can read it here

How to avoid falling foul of the Equality Act

I wrote an article for Corporate Health in September 2013, outlining how their customers could avoid falling foul of the Equality Act.

You can read the article here

Is work good for your health?

I wrote an article for Corporate Health recently, looking at the evidence for how work is generally good for your health and wellbeing.

Read the article here

Registered Office:

Icarus Health Solutions Ltd, The Apex, 2 Sheriffs Orchard, Coventry. CV1 3PP

Registered number: 07828339