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Occupational Health

Volume 472: debated on Wednesday 5 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how much the review of the health of the working age population has cost to date; (185834)

(2) when he expects the report of the review of the health of the working age population to be published.

In March 2007 Dame Carol Black was commissioned to carry out a review of the health of the working age population. The review, which will contain recommendations for Government and stakeholders, will help us to better understand the impact of ill-health in working age people and how best we can tackle this and support people to stay in work. It will help steer the Government’s strategy for the coming years.

To help her in taking forward her review, Dame Carol launched a “Call for Evidence” which ran until 30 November 2007. There has been a significant and very positive response, with over 260 submissions received and a number of very successful stakeholder events held across the country.

Dame Carol and her review team are currently in the latter stages of analysing the evidence gathered and drafting the report. She is currently hoping to submit her report to Ministers in March.

In addition to the salary costs of a small team of civil servants supporting her work, the stakeholder events cost approximately £75,000. The review will also be informed by a number of pieces of external research which Dame Carol has commissioned in partnership with the Government’s Health Work and Well-being Strategy. The cost of this research to date is around £250,000 and is ultimately expected to total around £300,000. As well as informing Dame Carol’s review, this research will be published separately and support the ongoing development of the Health, Work and Well-being Strategy.