March is Endometriosis awareness month, A&E sister Rachel McCrate writes about the Endometriosis friendly employer scheme at Gateshead Health.
The Endometriosis friendly employer scheme started at Gateshead Health in 2022 to spread awareness and educate trust staff on this often unheard of but common condition.
Rachel McCrate introduced the scheme in Gateshead and said, “It’s amazing how many people have contacted me since starting the scheme, even for their own friends and relatives, to be able to provide the best care or support they can.
I have been working closely with the health and well-being team and with the support of medical director Andy Beeby to deliver the scheme as effectively as possible in the trust.”
Rachel was diagnosed with Endometriosis five years ago, so is well aware of the effects and strain the condition can cause both in home life and in the working environment. The condition is still relatively unknown, even to some nurses and medics, so educating staff in the trust was one of her first priorities.
Since starting the scheme, Rachel has set up a support group for those diagnosed or undergoing interventions and treatment towards a diagnosis. The group hosted a “Tea for Endo” coffee morning in December which was a huge hit and raised a lot of awareness.
The group meets regularly throughout the year and provides ongoing support and holistic health guidance. It also plans to organise mindful wellbeing activities for those interested including, relaxation sessions, sunrise beach fitness sessions and yoga.
Rachel has supported the Trust with helpful guidance for managing staff with the condition which, all based on published documents can all be found on the Endometriosis UK website. These documents are also available as prints in the listening space.
This is a great way to empower women to live a confident, mindful, holistic and healthy lifestyle both at home and in the work environment.