Mental health in the workplace: Why more and more companies are taking note

By Adriana Selwyn

Today is World Mental Health Day, and this year, the focus is on a much-needed area: the impact of mental health in the workplace. Poor mental health not only impacts a person’s overall health and well-being, but it affects one’s ability to work productively, and therefore the health of a business.

Depression ranks among the top three mental health workplace issues, costing approximately $44 billion per year in lost productivity; while stress is estimated to cost U.S. businesses $30 billion per year. In addition to lower productivity, employees suffering from high stress levels also report lower engagement, higher absenteeism and burnout. Moreover, stress can impair a person’s ability to think creatively, retain information and solve problems.

With this realization, many organizations are now adopting strategies to improve the mental health of their workforce, from introducing mental illness screening and management programs, to providing “mental health days” and more flexible working conditions.

Vitality is enhancing its workplace health program to better address mental well-being through the introduction of HealthyMindTM activities in 2018 that promote relaxation and better sleep.

While poor mental health is a major challenge, there is plenty that can be done to help individuals, families and employers better manage it. With the average American spending 38.6 hours a week at work, focusing efforts on improving mental well-being in the workplace can have a significant impact.

If you or a loved one are experiencing mental health problems, seek help promptly from a healthcare provider.


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