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Your Mental Health at Work

October 7, 2013 by HealthyFamilies BC

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Your Mental Health at Work

We often hear the saying "There's no health without mental health", but we could just as easily say, "There's no work without mental health". 

Here are some interesting facts. Did you know:

  • About 21.4% of the working population in Canada currently experience mental health problems and illnesses, which can affect their productivity- this means 530,500 British Columbians.
  • The economic cost of mental health problems and illnesses in BC is at least $6.65 billion per year.
  • Fatigue, insomnia, and depression have been found to have the largest negative impact on workplace productivity.
  • An unhealthy work environment may result in a two-to threefold increase in the risk of mental health issues.
  • Improving the management of mental health in the workplace including prevention, early action to combat stress and early identification of problems could decrease losses to productivity by as much as 30%.
  • If the number of people experiencing a new mental illness in a given year was reduced by just 10% – after 10 years we could be saving the BC economy at least $532 million a year.

Business leaders around the province are taking notice of the impact that mental health problems can have on the lives of their employees and, in turn, their bottom line. Fortunately, there are several excellent tools and resources that workplaces can use to positively enhance their work environment and promote the mental health of employees.

The "At Work" section of HealthyFamilies BC has tools and resources to help employers and employees create workplaces that support healthy choices.  If you're wondering how your workplace health program stacks up, or if you want to know how to make improvements, try the Workplace Check – an online Q&A that provides helpful results.

Our guest blogger, Julie Adams, is a policy analyst at the BC Ministry of Health. She focuses on mental health promotion. She works to improve the mental health of all British Columbians, including those that are currently living with a mental illness and those who are currently not. Thanks for being our Guest Blogger Julie!

Recommended Resources:

HealthyFamilies BC: Mental Health and Wellbeing at Work
HealthyFamilies BC: Physical Activity at Work
Guarding Minds @ Work: A Workplace Guide to Psychological Health & Safety
Anti-depressant Skills @ Work: Dealing with Mood Problems in the Workplace
Canadian Mental Health Association: Workplace

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