Barcelona, October 27, 2020. The first meeting with potential local users of the European Platform to Promote Wellbeing and Health in the workplace (EMPOWER Project) has taken place, convened by the Parc Sanitari Sant Joan de Deu, project coordinator. It is the first of a series of meetings that had to be done by teleconference due to the coronavirus pandemic.
After a brief presentation of the members of the attending institutions (representatives of unions, mutual societies and universities) and EMPOWER, the project coordinator, Beatriz Olaya, PhD presented the eHealth platform and explained how it will be implemented in the companies that are going to participate. in this first phase of implementation. Spain is one of the three countries, along with Finland and Poland, where consultations with potential users will be carried out in order to define and adapt the interventions to different work contexts in European countries.
This first meeting served as a first contact between the researchers of the Spanish team, belonging to the San Joan de Deu Foundation in Barcelona, and the companies that have offered to try out the application, to whom the process was explained throughout these months of consultations.
As Beatriz Olaya explained to the representatives of the participating entities, the objective of these actions is to raise awareness about mental health problems in the workplace and reduce the stigma associated with these problems. It was explained to them that they will soon be able to access a digital training program to promote mental health among their employees. In the future, workers will be able to access the application, which also includes psychoeducational material. The final objective is for the participating companies to collaborate with the researchers in making the platform known to their employees, inviting them to participate. Similar meetings are being organized in Finland and Poland.
The EMPOWER project
The European Platform to Promote Wellbeing and Health in the workplace (EMPOWER) is a research and innovation project that consists of the development and implementation of an innovative low-cost online health platform for addressing mental health and wellbeing in the workplace from a multimodal perspective. The project, funded by the European Union Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program (Ref. No. 848180), will have the participation of employers and workers, insurance companies, people with mental health problems, trade unions, and political representatives. It is a collaboration of researchers from the fields of psychology, medicine, sociology, public health, economics, ethics, law, and communication technologies, and will be based on previous national and international research, as well as innovation activities of the members of the consortium themselves, who come from countries such as Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Finland, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, and Australia.
Through this collaboration, strategies will be designed to overcome the barriers that have been identified to the widespread implementation of programs to promote wellbeing and prevent mental health problems in the workplace. The eHealth platform is linked to other initiatives related to the promotion of mental health in the workplace. EMPOWER will address the growing burden of mental health problems in the workplace in order to improve the mental health of the workforce in the European Union, having a positive impact on work productivity. The objective of the project is to develop, manage and evaluate a multimodal and inclusive eHealth platform that takes into account cultural and gender aspects, based on the most feasible, brief and cost-effective interventions currently available in Europe to promote health and wellbeing and prevent common mental disorders using a variety of strategies to reduce the negative impact of mental health problems in the workplace.
EMPOWER is funded by the European Union Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Program (Ref. No. 848180). The project is coordinated and managed by the Fundació Sant Joan de Déu (FSJD) in Barcelona, Spain.
Department of Communication