The Government is set to accept a range of recommendations to drive down staff sickness and absence in the NHS.
High rates of illness and stress are impacting on patient care, according to an independent report into the health and well-being of NHS Staff by Dr Steve Boorman is expected to say.
The independent review was commissioned by the Department of Health to find ways of improving the health and wellbeing of 1.4 million NHS staff.
Dr Boorman calls for staff health checks, counselling for those with mental health problems and healthy eating advice to help people who are overweight.
The report also calls on NHS organisations to lead the way in promoting healthy lives to members of the public.
Annual NHS sickness levels are 10.7 days a year per employee - higher than the public sector average of 9.7 days and 50% higher than the private sector average of 6.4 days.
The NHS loses 10.3 million working days annually due to sickness absence alone, costing £1.7bn per year. Reducing this by a third would mean an extra 3.4 million working days a year, and annual direct cost savings of £555m.
Almost half of all NHS staff absence is accounted for by musculoskeletal disorders such as back pain and more than a quarter by stress, depression and anxiety.
The report recommends that staff with musculoskeletal disorders and mental health problems receive early support.