Increase in mental illness at work – practical guidance for employers

Increase in mental illness at work – practical guidance for employers

  • Date: Monday 24th April 2017
  • PDF: Download

A review of absence data from 2016 has shown that 55% of employers saw increases in the number of stress and mental health related illnesses reported by employees. 

The data also shows that employers who believe they have a key role in influencing employee health has decreased from 72% in 2015 to 67% in 2016.

A third of all long term sickness absence is down to mental illness.  This equates to one in four working days lost is due to mental illness.  This level of absence highlights the need for employers to actively manage cases and take proactive steps to reduce the illness from arising.


Consider your current approach:


1. Identify the culture of your Company

2. What support and resources do you have to assist employees?

3. How do you effectively communicate with your employees to identify risks and concerns?


Methods to reduce Mental Illness

  • Ensure return to work interviews are completed. 
  • Identify how you can support your employee
  • Introduce a wellness programme
  • Consider flexible working
  •       Sign post employees to support services

For employers in Devon there is the Devon NHS Depression and Anxiety Service and further details can be found at:

For employers in Cornwall the available services are detailed in a fact sheet that can be found at the following location:

Finally, consider the services offered by your insurer and Group Income Protection when an employee is long term sick.  Most insurers will offer a claims management service that can provide guidance and your Group Income Protection provider will have early intervention or rehabilitation services that you can utilise.


Further details on this story based on data provided by Aon can be found at:

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