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February/March 2008 (vol. 04/5)

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Mental ill health at work

Why presenteeism and increased labour turnover greatly increase the financial cost

Summary:

A report from the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health puts the cost to employers of mental ill health at work at £26 billion a year. But the hidden costs attributable to ‘presenteeism’ and increased staff turnover together swamp the direct costs from sickness absence. Michael Parsonage discusses the findings.

OCCUPATIONAL health professionals will be aware that mental health problems are widespread in the workforce, as they are in the community at large; indeed, mental ill health is now more important as a cause of sickness absence than any other health condition. Drawing on a recent report published by the Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health (SCMH), this article highlights the…

Michael Parsonage is senior policy adviser at The Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health.

Author: Parsonage M

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Occupational Health at Work February/March 2008 (vol. 04/5) pp13-16

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