Employers are being urged to provide more workplace health support and promote what is available in the employee benefits package ahead of World Cancer Day this Saturday (4 February).
Peppy is urging bosses to recognise the vital part they can play in offering preventative care and early diagnosis for cancer.
According to the digital app, in practice this means helping staff recognise the warning signs when symptoms should be investigated, signposting available screening programmes, and encouraging people to make lifestyle improvements to stop cancer from developing in the first place.
Kathy Abernethy, chief nursing officer and director of Menopause Services at Peppy, said: “Absolute prevention is, of course, the holy grail which is where changes in lifestyle can be helpful but early detection is also in the best interests of employers and employees as treatment at this stage may be less invasive, faster and increase rates of survival.”
In addition, new findings suggest easy access to cancer screening has increased in importance among employees.
Research conducted by Opinium on behalf of Towergate Health & Protection revealed that 32% of the 500 HR decision-makers polled believed this to be the case.
The study also discovered that more than two in five (42%) of employers believe that staff having a better understanding of their own dangers of serious illnesses, such as cancer, had grown in significance.
Debra Clark, head of specialist consulting at Towergate Health and Protection, said: “With survival rates high in cases of early diagnosis, providing risk profiling and screening for employees is likely to have a major impact on health and wellbeing across the workplace.”
Employers can offer access to many screenings through their health and wellbeing initiatives. These can be vital in getting an early diagnosis and can also help identify cancers before any symptoms start to show.
There are a number of screening tests which can be carried out, including some that can be done at home. Others may require a visit to a clinic, while some can take place onsite at workplaces.
Clark added: “Employers prompted by World Cancer Day 2023 to offer simple screening or risk profiling services could literally have saved lives by the next World Cancer Day.”