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Mental ill-health accounts for half of workplace illnesses

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Stress, depression and anxiety accounted for more than half of all work-related ill health cases in the last year, according to new figures from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

The report found that an estimated 914,000 people suffered from mental illness related to their work in the year 21-22.

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England chief executive, Simon Blake, said:

“The impact of the pandemic has been tough on us all and the intensifying cost of living crisis will only serve to compound those stresses.

“Having said that, one silver lining from the pandemic is that we began to talk more freely about our mental health and support one another.

“As a nation, we are on a journey to develop our understanding of mental health.

“We must use that understanding to create healthier workplaces and communities so we can also seek and signpost to mental health support when we need it.”

The news follows the publication of a recent study which looked at the impact of mental ill-health in the workplace.

According to a series of in-depth interviews, managers of small businesses face a ‘balancing act’ in supporting employee mental health.

The University of York and King’s College London research found that managers are struggling to balance employee needs with the demands and wellbeing of the wider workforce.

Turning to tech

Technology is increasingly stepping in to support workplace mental wellness, with Headspace recently announcing the launch of its own workplace wellness offering.

The solution brings together Headspace’s meditation and mindfulness tools with Ginger’s on-demand coaching and therapy services.

Meanwhile, five mental health apps for children will be reimbersed as part of NICE’s Early Value Assessment for Medtech.

The pilot is being introduced in a bid to tackle staff shortages and lower waiting lists.

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