What support is there for
Managers following a
Author: Sharon Brown, Ops Manager
Date: July 2019
Review date: July 2021
Leaflet V1 OHLF 1701
Managers and other key personnel within the organisation are in an ideal position to ensure that
suitable help is provided in a timely manner for employees experiencing problems. If
appointments are required within OH it is important to send directly to the Head of Service marked
as major incident so these can be managed swiftly and appropriately .
Managers can also take a proactive approach in ensuring that help reaches the employees when
they most need it. Providing details of CIC the Trust Employee Assistance programme is a good
starting point. Some staff may not be able to contact or feel they do not need it, this is when either
the Manager of the Employee Wellbeing Service can refer directly. this can be as an informal
referral or a formal referral which will be followed up with a report and recommendation
To maximise the success of the formal referral process, the Manager can use the Managerial
Advice Line to discuss with one of the Confidential Care senior case managers how best to
position the counselling support and what else, if anything, should be considered before offering
Following any major incident there will be groups of staff who need support and yet need different
support at different times.
The Employee Wellbeing Service can provide rapid access to specialist support through local
providers and in conjunction with the EAP, Local IAPTs team and specialist Trauma counsellors .
This can include :
Group and individual absence management “Fit for Work”
Psychological Assessment and Report
On Site support for groups or individuals
Individual Specialist post trauma support such as EMDR
Longer term therapy
Specialist CBT – usually a series of ten sessions delivered by a BABCP accredited CBT
specialist or by a clinical psychologist. CBT is appropriate for many behavioural issues including
particular phobias and may be useful when normality has returned following a crisis and
individuals then begin to struggle
Fit for Work – this can be tailored for group or individual support and is designed to minimise the
impact of anxiety and stress related sickness absence. Programmes can take place over several
months to suit the Department.
Psychological Assessment and Report – this is usually carried out over extended sessions and
the report is designed to provide managers with more information on issues that might impact in
the work place.
Professional Support – this can help and support Managers and give advice on how to give the
support to their teams
On Site Support –following a critical incident or other traumatic event that impacts on teams or
individuals. It is important to reduce the psychological impact of such an incident and shorten the
duration of any symptoms; onsite support also demonstrates duty of care and will often identify
those employees that need additional support.
Individual Specialist Trauma Support – EMDR and other specialist approaches to support
people experiencing ongoing symptoms following one or multiple critical or traumatic incident/s.
Longer Term Therapy – there might be occasions when funding longer term therapy is
Mindfulness – is the treatment of choice for some depression / anxiety states and can be offered
to those who may need to adjust their focus.
Guidance for managers - key points
1. Be aware of what are natural responses to trauma and reassure staff that what they are
experiencing is natural.
2. Be alert to staff who might be especially vulnerable, perhaps because of past experience or
particularly close involvement with the incident or those involved in it. Talk to employees
individually, and check if extra support is needed.
3. Be present and around. People need to spend time talking to each other as they work, and it
helps for the manager to join in casually and encourage this by example. This applies not only to
those directly involved in the traumatic incident, but also those who witnessed it, had friends or
colleagues involved, etc.
4. Communicate about what is happening in a face-to-face meeting. Informing staff of what has
happened, and of unfolding events, needs to be done sensitively and quickly. Managers may wish
to convene a 'first thing every morning' meeting for staff in the aftermath of a big disaster. It is best
to keep such meetings brief, factual and information sharing, practical rather than emotion
focused. It may be appropriate for a representative from the Employee Wellbeing Service to
5. Do not necessarily send people involved in an incident home. As far as possible,
immediate psychological first aid is best provided by being with and sharing experiences with work
colleagues and friends, rather than removed to talk to a stranger, Wherever possible, re-establish
normal working routines as soon as possible, albeit gently and flexibly, and enable people to talk
about what has happened as they work, thereby avoiding any onset of denial.
6. Keep in touch. If staff do need to take time off it is vital to keep in touch by telephone, visiting
and/or getting colleagues to visit. Encourage a rapid return to work, even part-time, etc. as being
back at work among colleagues is normally the best possible therapy for preventing long-term
7. Be aware of cultural differences.
There are, some situations which tend to bring to the surface fundamental cultural issues.
Different cultural and religious attitudes to death, disaster and trauma are one of the areas where
this is to be expected. Managers should be mindful of their team, seek support where required
8. Give Time. Many people take up to three weeks to settle down after major trauma. Counselling
in the form of reassurance, explanation, and general normalisation of the response may be
appropriate during this period but most people need nothing more.
9. Accept that for a period normal working will be disrupted. For some staff, workloads may
need to be temporarily re-assessed, or less complex tasks assigned. However, after a recovery
period, it is appropriate to gently re-instate the boundaries of normal working.
Employee Wellbeing Services
Health & Wellness Centre
31-43 Ashfield Street
Royal London Hospital
London, E1 2AH
Tel: 020 3594 6609
Fax: 020 7377 7621