Reinventing mental health support

Viewpoint

2 August 2018

When we think about physical health conditions, such as cancer, heart disease or diabetes, we don’t wait years to treat them. We start with prevention. And this same mindset needs to be applied to how we approach our own mental health.

As businesses, we have to consider the full journey and the way we tailor our mental health plans, our communications and our benefits to best support employees when they need help.

The core stages of mental health

  1. Mild symptoms and warning signs
  2. Symptom frequency increases as well as severity. Starting to impact work or home life
  3. Worsening symptoms or recurring/relapsed episodes. Serious disruption to work or home life
  4. Persistent and severe episodes, a risk to self or others 

The increasing trends towards mental ill health:

  • 15% of people at work¹ have symptoms of an existing mental health condition 
  • Poor mental health costs UK employers £33-42bn each year²
  • 300,000 people with a long-term mental health problem lose their jobs each year¹ 

We’re transforming healthcare

Mental health conditions can be complex, so it’s crucial to have an understanding of all the issues so you can help those who need support. We’ll be by your side, working collaboratively to help you achieve your business goals, providing clarity and guidance when you need it. And as the nature of work continually changes, we’ll work with you to drive awareness, support wellbeing and deliver quick and direct access to care, putting good health in your people’s hands.

Awareness and spotting the symptoms early

Raising awareness and developing coping mechanisms is    a really positive approach for your workforce. It helps build resilience, reduces progression through the stages of mental health, and helps establish a culture where support is actively sought and offered. 

We’ll consult on what’s right for your business, whether that’s onsite training for employees and line managers, advice around communications, mental health first aid  training, mental health champions, or addressing some of the other contributing factors such as nutrition, sleep and presenteeism. 

First and foremost, it’s about your employees, helping them learn how to recognise, talk and act around mental health. 

Helping you look after your employees’ mental wellbeing

The Thriving at Work Report (2017) laid out the mental health journey very well. It said that at any one time, many employees will be thriving, but with frequent movement between thriving, struggling and those who are ill/off work. The challenge is how to manage these complex journeys. Bringing together tailored in-house mental health support, signposting to clinical help, the right triage at the right time, digital support, and employer-purchased Occupational Health or Employee Assistance Programmes can all make a big difference. 

Absences due to mental health conditions, such as stress, depression and anxiety, are on the rise3. So it’s no longer enough just having a list of benefits you can offer to affected employees.

Mental health treatment when it’s needed

We’re absolutely committed to supporting the mental health of your workforce and providing treatment when it’s needed. That’s why our corporate health cover includes mental health cover as standard. 

Our Stronger Minds pathway makes treatment more accessible too. There’s no need to see a GP – the moment an employee feels the onset of a mental health condition, they can call a trained mental health expert who will assess them and triage, so they get the help they need more quickly.

And as our healthcare teams offer such a comprehensive range of services, we can offer your people a broader range of support. For example, our Occupational Health clinicians can manage cases involving multiple conditions at the same time. 

Supporting your business in a crisis

We work with forward-thinking organisations so they have the tools they need to cope if the worst happens. Whether it’s theft or a human disaster, it’s often the human element that has the biggest impact on a good outcome, no matter how solid your business continuity planning. It’s at these times that communication and compassion are critical for your employees. So we’ll help you plan, prepare, react and care when your employees need you most. 

Finding tomorrow’s treatments

What’s best for an employee today might not be what’s best for them tomorrow. That’s why we’re partnering with innovators to pilot and test new ways of helping employees with their mental health. 

1 Thriving at work, 2017

2 The case for investment, Deloitte, Oct 2017

3 Health and Wellbeing at Work 2018

Finding tomorrow’s treatments

What’s best for an employee today might not be what’s best for them tomorrow. That’s why we’re partnering with innovators to pilot and test new ways of helping employees with their mental health. 

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Health Tech and You

Innovations in health technology are transforming the way we care for our minds and bodies. That’s why we’re supporting the inventors of the future with our Health Tech and You Awards.

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Advance

We're devoted to delivering better health, better service and better care at every stage of your employees' treatment. 

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Employee Assistance Programme

When your employees need support with their mental health, we’ll be on hand to intervene early.