Biba sets up mental health first aid course

Helping hand

The body is subsidising mental health first aid training for members and has four regional sessions set up for 2020.

The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (Biba) has teamed up with Mental Health In Business to offer mental health first aid training to its member brokers.

Biba will pay 75% towards the cost of the course. Each has 12 places and there will be one available place per member on a first come, first served basis.

The course is accredited by Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) which specialises in training people to identify when colleagues are experiencing a mental health issue and how to encourage them to get help.

The two day courses will run in:

  • Holiday Inn, Garforth, Leeds on 23 and 24 January.
  • Crowne Plaza, Birmingham on 5 and 6 February.
  • Malmaison, Manchester on 24 and 25 February.
  • Acord Auditorium, London on 16 and 17 March.

According to Biba, it is commonly estimated that one in four people will experience some form of mental illness each year and its effects on the working population result in many millions of lost working days.

Despite this, only 9% of employees and 13% of managers have attended training that focused entirely on their mental health.

The right thing
Steve White, Biba CEO, said: “Mental health issues can affect anybody and at any time and the better equipped we are to spot it, support those having difficulties and talk openly about it, the easier it will be for people to seek help and support. 

“This initiative is not just a good thing to do for our members but is the right thing to do.”

MHFA training enables firms to provide support and assistance to employees that appear to be suffering mental ill health at work which in turn can help to develop openness within a firm and a culture of respect and support.

The idea was inspired after a number of Biba staff undertook the training earlier in 2019.

Biba also did a session on mental health at its conference in May. White told Insurance Age that the session was one of the most well received in the conference’s history.

White continued: “Several employees of Biba underwent the training earlier this year and the feedback I received was 100% positive. With this in mind, I hope that our members will embrace the training and the benefits it brings.”

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