Mental health stigma keeps workers from talking about it

An international mental health survey to experts in mental health and occupation indicates that only 25% of staff would talk about their mental health at work.

According to the experts evaluated, the main targets to be addressed should be workplace bullying and mental health stigma. Photo: Luca Bravo for Unsplash.

Depression and anxiety are the first and the sixth leading cause of job absenteeism respectively. And between now and 2030, this situation is estimated to cost 6 trillion euros. Knowing more about how mental health is dealt with in the work environment, and what measures are taken to address it, is essential to combat these illnesses.

“There is a huge stigma in companies about these issues, people don’t talk about them for fear of being excluded or suffering reprisals”
Benedikt Amann, IMIM-Hospital del Mar

The Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute (IMIM) and the Hospital del Mar have recently led a study that is part of the Mental Health Promotion and Intervention in Occupational Settings (MENTUPP) initiative. The online survey of international experts from various sectors related to mental health and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) indicates that only one in four employees would dare to talk about their mental health at work, and that these situations tend to be hidden.

Respondents also claim that there is a lack of documents and guides both to learn more about anxiety and depression and to accompany employees in these situations, as well as to deal with the return of an employee after medical sick leave. Some of the most valued actions would be awareness campaigns, or workshops with people who have lived through these experiences.

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