Chronic illness will force an early exit from the workforce of too many Tasmanians unless it is tackled at work as well as at home, a national workplace health conference in Hobart was told on August 21.
Director of Public Health Dr Roscoe Taylor told the Good Health Good Business conference that workplace health and wellbeing was an essential investment in productivity.
"We will need many Tasmanians to work for longer as our labour pool declines, but to make this happen we need to create workplaces where healthy lifestyle choices are easy choices," Dr Taylor said.
"It will take strong leadership from business and the community to move us beyond ad-hoc measures to systematic workplace strategies that promote good health and wellbeing.
"Today we need to view workplace health and wellbeing as important as safety, which is going to demand broad partnerships and good policy.
"Of course, a stronger focus on employee health and wellbeing is not just about tackling labour shortages and boosting productivity, it's also about ensuring workers go home safely and retire in good health."
Dr Taylor said Tasmania was leading the way in promoting better employee health and wellbeing, and the conference would hear several inspiring local business case studies.
Dr Taylor said the two-day conference was the culmination of over a decade of investment by Tasmanian Government agencies in promoting workplace health and wellbeing, and developing partnerships with businesses.
"A major National Health and Medical Research Council-funded research partnership with the University of Tasmania over the past four years has also contributed greatly to our understanding of workplace health initiatives," Dr Taylor said.
The Good Health Good Business conference has brought international, national and Tasmania speakers together to discuss the latest research and ideas on health safety and wellbeing in the workplace.
Speakers include American Human Resources Institute president Dr Judd Allen; Olympic gold medallist Matt Welsh; AFL legend Stan Alves; Fairbrother Group founder Royce Fairbrother, and Dr Peter Cotton who will speak from experience about leading a high performing workplace culture.
21 August 2014