Mental Health is a growing concern in today’s workplace – gaining regular coverage in the news and media.
The CentreForum Mental Health Commission, recently stated that “all organisations with more than 500 employees should work to become mental health friendly employers.”
As much as £15 billion is lost each year in the UK. This is as a result of employees with mental health problems struggling in the workplace without the support they need*.
Why Mental Health is a problem for employers
We know that in many businesses across the UK, people are working at the same time as managing more complex mental health conditions. These include bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder, anxiety and phobias. Many people with conditions such as these can struggle to find work and staying in work is difficult if they are not well supported.
So it’s no surprise that increasingly, employers feel an obligation to be aware of the effects of mental health on their staff and also to look out for the warning signs. Even today, many cases of mental health go unrecognised until it is too late. This can have a devastating impact on employees and the workplace as a whole.
1. Each year, 70 million working days are lost due to mental ill health*. Whether this is due to sickness absence or loss of productivity this is a statistic that employers just cannot afford to ignore.
2. About 30% of all GP consultations are related to a mental health problem*. Mental ill health is more common than you’d think, so it’s important to be aware of the signs and how to address this sensitive subject.
3. Mental Health is still a taboo subject in the workplace. Many employees feel scared, embarrassed or unable to talk about mental health concerns with their employer. In fact, mental health, just like physical health, can be improved through simple yet effective steps.
What can employers do – Mental Health First Aid Courses
To help address the issues associated with mental health, specialist services can support mental health in the workplace and deliver a Mental Health First Aid course. Employers could utilise an internationally-accredited Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) course which gives attendees ‘Mental Health First Aider’ status and helps attendees to:
• spot the first signs and symptoms of a range of mental health problems
• have the confidence to intervene when a problem is observed – helping to prevent them from developing into something much more serious.
Courses can be run for companies of all sizes, giving employers the option to run onsite sessions for their own staff or to join other like-minded companies in their sector.
Search online for “Mental Health First Aid Courses” for internationally-accredited Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) courses, which gives attendees ‘Mental Health First Aider’ status.
Pure Benefits offers all the products above to help protect some 1.4 million UK employees. Click here to learn more about the ways that Pure Benefits can help your business boost employee engagement.
The above article has been provided by Unum Limited.