Transformation for Limerick hospital staff after 100-stone slim down

Fintan Walsh


Fintan Walsh

Transformation for Limerick hospital staff after 100-stone slim down

Staff at University Hospital Limerick celebrate their weight loss success, as a result of the recent eight-week Operation Transformation workplace challenge

STAFF members at the UL Hospitals Group have collectively shed close to 100 stone, after participating in eight weeks of the Operation Transformation workplace challenge.

In total, 314 staff members, across the six hospitals, lost  94 stone and 6lbs, with a cumulative 133-inch waistline loss.

More than eight weeks ago, staff had their initial weight and waist measurements recorded, and then selected an Operation Transformation leader, and each participant engaged in their food and fitness plan.

During the course of the two-month initiative, staff events were organised to promote physical activity and exercise, which included pilates, circuit training, lunchtime walks and park runs.

The UL Hospitals Group leader was Jean Quinn McDonagh, who is director of physiotherapy at University Hospital Limerick.

She said that she was “delighted with the success” of the programme.

“The feedback from staff who took part was so positive. When we surveyed the entire workforce last year to get a snapshot of their physical activity levels, almost all of the 1,006  who responded indicated that they would like specific programmes to be made available during lunch breaks and after work to motivate them to become more active,” Ms Quinn McDonagh said.

Another pleased participant in the project was UL Hospitals Group CEO, Colette Cowan.

“Through the Healthy Ireland programme, we have developed a national framework for health and wellbeing for the next generation. Those of us who work in the health sector have a special responsibility to recognise and live those values.

“But there’s a huge fun side to all of this too and events like the recent workplace challenge at UL Hospitals are living proof that, working with our colleagues, family or friends, a burden shared can be a burden halved.”

Group head of health and wellbeing, Hugh Brady said that the staff will now aim to participate in the National Million Pound Weight Loss Challenge.

Staff will promote the HSE’s Health Ireland agenda for staff, patients and communities.

In summer 2015, the HSE and UHL staff raised close to €2,500 for Pieta House, as a result of their fitness and wellbeing challenge, From Couch to 5k.

The project involved two training sessions every week, for two months, ahead of a 5k run or walk. More than 200 people, predominantly UL Hospitals staff, participated in the new event.