A new approach to teaching healthcare students safe moving and handling techniques developed by healthcare academics at Birmingham City University in the UK resulted in a 92 percent reduction in student injuries. Last year 7120 students participated in the posture awareness program first introduced in 2009 – and only three reported incidents of injury.

Lead Academic in Moving and Handling, Stephen Wanless from the University’s Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences, says the new training principles have “revolutionised traditional manual handling procedures” and have the potential to save money across the NHS if adopted on a larger scale.

“Despite moving and handling training being mandatory in the UK since 1992, 40 percent of NHS absences are related to musculoskeletal disorders that cost the NHS around £400,000,000 every year,” he said. “Based on the principles we have developed in our new training program, it could be possible save the NHS millions of pounds a year lost due to staff musculo-skeletal injuries.”