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RR257 - Occupational health and SMEs: Focused intervention strategies

HSE is concerned that Occupational Health is not given the attention it deserves in Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs). The issue for HSE is how best to initiate improvements to good occupational health practices within these businesses.The study examined psychological models of behaviour change, organisational and social characteristics of SMEs and the potential for incentives to achieve change. It is clear that the manager is a key influence on occupational health practices in SMEs and acts as a 'gatekeeper' to controlling change. This person is key to the success of an intervention, and therefore must be included. Additionally, direct influence on the workforce should be attempted to create an upward pressure on the gatekeeper for change. To increase the likelihood of the desired change succeeding, an effective approach would include a number of complementary interventions, where each intervention compensates for the shortcomings of others. This study includes the development of an Interventions Attribute Set that assists in assessing a proposed intervention strategy and ensuring that effective use is made of complementary interventions.

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Updated 2010-03-19