Health x Wellness

20,000 gig economy workers to get meaningful health programmes from HPB

By  |  0 Comments

Health Promotion Board initiative will enable gig economy workers and other self-employed persons to take better charge of their physical and mental well-being

The number of self-employed persons has risen in the last few years. Slightly over 70 percent were aged 40 and above, and those in this age group are generally at a higher risk of developing chronic health conditions as they age.

The Health Promotion Board (HPB) will be scaling up a workplace health initiative it has piloted. This initiative seeks to provide the gig economy workforce and other self-employed persons with access to health programmes that equip these workers with knowledge and skills to improve their physical and mental well-being.

Riding on the encouraging outcomes from the pilot, HPB is expanding its touch points, with an aim to bring the workplace health programmes to 20,000 gig workers and other self-employed persons by 2024.

This is part of the Tripartite Oversight Committee on Workplace Safety and Health’s efforts to extend health and safety programmes to priority sectors with higher proportions of mature workers aged 40 and above.

Self-employed persons contribute significantly to our economy. Many of these workers are at higher risk of chronic health conditions, and we want to do more to improve their health. As these workers take better charge of their health, they will be able to work for as long as they wish. We also urge more partners to come on board to support the well-being of these workers.

Mr Zaqy Mohamad, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Defence & Ministry of Manpower, and Co-Chairperson of the Tripartite Oversight Committee

Providing accessible and customised health programmes

Together with partners such as ComfortDelgro, foodpanda, Grab and NTUC’s Freelancers and Self-Employed Unit (U FSE), HPB offers workplace health programmes to gig workers and self-employed persons who are registered with these companies. They comprise largely taxi and private-hire vehicle drivers, delivery riders, private tutors and sports and fitness instructors.

health programmes

The initiative includes health screening for chronic diseases, customised follow-up health coaching sessions with practical bite-sized tips on topics such as nutrition, physical activity and mental well-being.

Physical activity sessions and mental well-being workshops are also offered under the initiative.

Through these programmes, participants can acquire useful tips for their physical and mental well-being that they can practise in their own time, such as muscle conditioning and stretching exercises, or relaxation and stress-coping techniques to manage negative emotions when feeling distressed at work.

The programmes are also conducted in a mix of virtual and on-site modalities to offer accessibility and flexibility.

For example, there is a collaboration with foodpanda to develop a microsite on its rider engagement portal, to complement existing health screening sessions, follow-up phone coaching and physical activity classes offered to foodpanda’s delivery riders. The microsite will enable the riders to access health information relevant to their work nature, at their own time and convenience.

Participants are also onboarded to HPB’s programmes such as National Steps Challenge and Eat, Drink, Shop Healthy Challenge, to help sustain their healthier lifestyle.

Photo by LinkedIn Sales Solutions on Unsplash and by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash