Ensuring the health and safety of globally mobile employees

Recent disease epidemics, political crises and natural disasters have brought the wellbeing of expatriate employees, business travellers and international assignees to the top of corporate agendas.

Ensuring the health and safety of globally mobile employees
As organisations of all types and sizes pursue global growth, an ever-increasing number of key personnel are being deployed to work in an ever-lengthening list of overseas destinations, whether on long-term, short-term or project-related international assignments, or on business trips.It has become more important than ever to undertake thorough pre-assignment health and wellbeing assessments, and to have in place properly-thought-out, comprehensive health and safety policies and procedures, as well as emergency response plans.Providing appropriate health support for domestic employees and relocatees is no less vital.In an exclusive Relocate video, Dave White, of Healix International, explains the importance for HR of understanding healthcare issues when managing a global team:

Health making headlines

Health and wellbeing issues, from air pollution in China to the latest disease epidemic or superbug – most recently the Zika virus in Latin America – are constantly in the headlines, presenting employers based in affected regions, as well as global mobility managers and relocation professionals, with fresh challenges.Protecting employees and international assignees by providing support to mitigate the health, wellness and security risks they face not only helps the company to meet its duty of care but also makes sound business sense by enhancing the employer brand and lessening the risk of assignment failure. As part of this support, it is vital that employees working overseas have the right international private medical insurance (iPMI) cover. They should also be encouraged to make use of the added extras which many insurers offer as part of their iPMI packages, such as medical and health apps and websites providing health tips and information and health-related services, such as stress management.

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It’s important, too, to encourage employees to seek a good work-life balance and promote their own health and fitness by following a health diet, taking exercise, and keeping up to speed with the latest health news and health articles, plus relevant medical and health information.

Protecting valuable talent

In today’s ever-more-global business world, it’s easy for both employer and employee to underestimate the risks to security, health and wellbeing incurred by those working overseas. As recent events have shown, complacency is not an option.It’s clear that having effective measures in place to protect globally mobile workers and their accompanying families from these risks makes sense in business terms, as well as human ones.

For more news and features about health and wellness, visit our Global Health and Wellness section.

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