Spotlight on Health and Wellbeing: Jodie Kendall

13th May 2022


Our Growing Occupational Health and Wellbeing team is working with NHS Trusts around the region to pilot an integrated occupational health and wellbeing service, designed to create a culture of wellness within the trusts.

As part of Mental Health Awareness Week, we’re shining a spotlight on the amazing occupational health and wellbeing staff the team is working with.

Here, we caught up with Jodie Kendall, Wellbeing/Moving and Handling Specialist at South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, to find out more about her work and get her top health and wellbeing tips.  


Tell us a bit about yourself and your background.

My name is Jodie Kendall and I am a Wellbeing/ Moving and Handling specialist at South Tyneside and Sunderland Foundation Trust. I am a qualified Physiotherapist and I’ve worked in Occupational Health for the last 7 years previously in the OH Physio team and then more recently I have moved over to the Wellbeing team.


What does your role involve?

My role is split between managing the Staff Wellbeing and Moving and Handling Teams/Services.

As Staff Wellbeing Lead my responsibilities include:

  • Leading the Wellbeing team – which includes the Wellbeing advisors, Child care and care co-ordinator and a Wellbeing admin assistant.
  • Managing the staff health and fitness centre.
  • Leading on the BHAWA.
  • Team wellbeing support initiative.
  • Wellbeing support for line managers
  • Health promotion and campaigns.
  • Being involved in Trust wellbeing working groups.

At present I am also involved in developing: Health advocate training, Staff health check programme, staff menopause support, smoking cessation services and several other new staff support initiatives.


As Moving and Handling Lead my role involves:

  • Managing the Trust Moving and Handling trainers and co-ordinator.
  • Involvement in Trust wide procurement exercises.
  • Giving M+H advice.
  • Advising on M+H risk assessments.
  • Moving and Handling auditing and evaluations.
  • Involvement in MH protocol and policy design.
  • Joint working with H&S team.


Why is health and wellbeing so important in the workplace?

In my case working in healthcare, a healthier and happier workforce improves patient care and experience. Our staff deliver essential care and services to the local community. Therefore ensuring we look after our workforce’s health and wellbeing will not only make our Trust a happier and more productive workplace but also benefit our region as a whole. This is why supporting NHS staff with their health and wellbeing, promoting healthy lifestyle choices and seeking proactive solutions in the workplace is vital.


What are your top health/wellbeing tips for people generally?

Find what works for you and don’t be afraid of “failure”.

When trying to change behaviours and improve or look after your health and wellbeing, the first thing you try might not always be the right thing for you or with time might stop being as beneficial. This isn’t failure and doesn’t mean you should stop trying. Take the positives from this experience and learn from/ tweak the things not working as well.

Find something you enjoy and set goals to keep yourself motivated, this will mean you are far more likely to stick any changes in behaviour.