We recognise it is important to support staff to look after their health and wellbeing, whilst supporting patients and their family. The NHS achieves extraordinary things for patients, but this is only possible if the safety, health and wellbeing of our people is recognised as a key priority. So, we have put together a health and wellbeing offer which includes access to a number of psychological (mental health) support apps. We want to be able to support our staff and help them to feel in control of managing their own mental health and wellbeing. Our varied health and wellbeing support is here and here to stay. The support is here for you to access whenever you need it and can be revisited if you need further help.
We are continuing to work with a selection of app suppliers to offer free mental health and wellbeing support to NHS staff. To sign up to Headspace and Unmind, you will need an NHS email account to access the free offer. Stay Alive is available to the wider population and can be accessed using either your personal or work email account.
If you would like help with your sleep, managing your anxiety or support in taking a moment to be mindful, you can download or access any of the apps using your NHS email account to register.
You are only able to use your personal email account to sign up for Stay Alive. For the other apps, you will need to use your NHS email account to access these free offers from the suppliers. Using your NHS email account will confirm your eligibility as a current NHS employee or as someone delivering NHS services (such as Estates).
All NHS employees are issued an NHS email address when they join their local organisation. If this hasn’t happened, please contact your local IT helpdesk or speak with your line manager.
To sign up to Headspace and Unmind, you will need an NHS email account to access the free offer. Stay Alive is available to the wider population and can be accessed using either your personal or work email account.
Yes, all primary care staff are included in this offer. You can use your work or personal email account to sign up to Stay Alive. To sign up to the other apps, you will need to use your NHS email account.
Before contacting the app support team, we recommend that you check your Junk mail folder. If you have not received the activation email after 24 hours, please contact the app suppliers for technical support.
Each supplier is providing their own technical support, details for each app can be found below.
Unmind: Please contact email@example.com
Headspace: Please visit https://help.headspace.com/hc/en-us/articles/360044971154
Each app is offering free access until 31 December 2022.
We will continue to review the overall health and wellbeing offer for NHS staff, in discussion with social care staff, and will consider which offers are most beneficial for our NHS people as we move forward.
Absolutely, please encourage your local NHS staff groups to download and use the apps to support their health and wellbeing. Each app offers something different and staff are encouraged to try them all to determine which feels right for them.
We have been using a wide range of communication routes to share these apps as we are keen to ensure all staff see the offer and access the support they need. As well as sharing the offer through multiple email channels and bulletins, we have also published the offer on the following pages:
NHS Employers: https://www.nhsemployers.org/news/2020/03/free-access-to-wellbeing-apps-for-all-nhs-staff
Twitter: @people_nhs @unmindhq @headspace
You can also find out more on each app’s own website.
Each app offers something different, which is especially important given how personal managing our mental health and wellbeing is to each of us. A brief description of each app is as below.
Unmind is a mental health platform that empowers staff to proactively improve their mental wellbeing. Using scientifically backed assessments, tools and training you can measure and manage your personal mental health needs, including digital programmes designed to help with stress, sleep, coping, connection, fulfilment and nutrition.
Headspace is a science-backed app in mindfulness and meditation, providing unique tools and resources to help reduce stress, build resilience, and aid better sleep.
Stay Alive is a suicide prevention resource for the UK, packed full of useful information and tools to help you stay safe in crisis. You can use it if you are having thoughts of suicide or if you are concerned about someone else who may be considering suicide.
We will continue to work with suppliers to consider additional support offers that will be beneficial to the health and wellbeing of our staff. We review the health and wellbeing programme at regular intervals to ensure we are offering a select and diverse range of apps that suit the needs of our workforce.
Yes, staff have positively feedback via social media and to us as a team about their experience of using the apps. We are also looking at non-identifiable data to determine how actively staff are using their accounts, and if there are any trends we can use to tailor our future support offers to meet the needs of our staff.
You can provide feedback on the apps in one of two ways: directly to the Twitter accounts of any of the apps, or you can leave feedback on the NHS staff health and wellbeing Twitter page: @people_nhs
If you do not have Twitter, you can email feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org