The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has launched a digital tool to support the mental health and wellbeing of seafarers.
Named the Wellbeing at Sea Tool, provides the user with a digital survey and when completed provides them with personalised advice on how to improve their wellbeing while at sea.
Data captured is anonymised and sent to managers within the seafarer’s company to help them better understand the priorities for improvement.
Katy Ware, director of UK Maritime Services said: “There is – sadly – still a stigma around mental health. The fact seafarers still don’t feel able to talk about it or access services says a lot about how far we still have to go in terms of reducing that taboo.
“This is exactly why we have launched our Wellbeing at Sea Tool. By identifying stressors and issues at an early stage, we hope that the tool will help to reduce stress among seafarers which is a contributory factor to mental health problems.”
Report on issue
The MCA has also published a new report, funded jointly with the Department for Transport, on mental health in the industry.
Titled Wellbeing at Sea, it finds that the issue is still taboo and says there is a need for better support for seafarers.
Maritime Minister Robert Courts said: “This new report will help us to address this important issue, and with support from the MCA with its new online service, we will continue to challenge the sector to take action to ensure all seafarers are properly supported on land and at sea.”