The RAF’s Introduction to Health & Wellbeing month

The RAF takes the Health and Wellbeing of its people seriously and here, Wing Commander Sharon McMillan talks to us about not only the challenges but what’s there for everyone to use.

During the COVID-19 Pandemic personnel may be experiencing new challenges as they are asked to work remotely from home. This may bring challenges not experienced before and personnel may need to adapt to this new situation.   The WHO Mental Health and Psychosocial Considerations during COVID-19 Outbreak guidance sets out some useful information on how to protect yourself and be supportive of others, including caring for children and older adults. The guidance is particularly useful now that the intention is that people identified as in a vulnerable group and people aged 70 years or over may have to self-isolate for several weeks.  

RAF FF input

Over the month of May, the RAF Families Federation will concentrate on a number of key health and wellbeing issues to help support you during this current time.  By staying active both mentally and physically, managing sleep, being mindful of drinking/smoking or boredom eating behaviours etc. The RAF takes the Health and Wellbeing of its people seriously and studies into the behaviour of military personnel have also revealed some poor lifestyle choices.   

The RAF is continually improving the health of its people through tackling the factors that reduce healthy life expectancy such as encourage sensible and moderate drinking, including reducing alcohol consumption and supporting the Government in smoking cessation.  The RAF continues to promote healthier choices, promote positive behaviour and better awareness on a number of lifestyles issues such as the important of sensible weight management, nutrition and fitness, encouraging people to take responsibility for their own health by making informed healthy lifestyle choices. 

Please use the resources provided over this month as required and pass onto your family members and friends. 

Wg Cdr Sharon McMillan, SO1 Wellbeing and Resilience, RAF Headquarters, Air Command.

COVID-19 

There is a wealth of information that has been released in the wake of Coronavirus (COVID-19). The RAF Families Federation has pulled everything into one coronavirus section of their website for easy reference with specific information around health and wellbeing also online.

The NHS is now producing regular Coronavirus Updates for the Armed Forces Community, relevant for Service Personnel, Families and Veterans. The NHS has a duty to deliver on a number of health commitments for the Armed Forces community (service personnel (regular and reserves), veterans and their families), to meet the obligations of the Armed Forces Covenant and principle four of the NHS Constitution. Their priority during the outbreak of COVID-19 is to ensure that those who require NHS services can access them as easily and safely as possible. They will be sending out this briefing every week to keep you up-to-date with the provision of NHS services for the Armed Forces community, as well as latest guidance. Read the latest Coronavirus Update 1 May 2020

The RAF is providing information for all Whole Force personnel and the wider RAF Family. They will be providing up to date links through to Government Guidelines on what everybody needs to be aware of. 

Further information

As well as the current Coronavirus advice and guidance, the RAF FF’s website provides a good reference section on all things health-related. You can also sign up to our (free) weekly eBulletin and/or quarterly Envoy magazine to keep yourself up to date generally with updates and information on new initiatives as they go live.

Health and Wellbeing themed image of two people sitting on the top of a mountain with their feet crossed, looking out across an amazing view

Photo by Luis Melendez on Unsplash.

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