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February/March 2009 (vol. 05/5)

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Back, but not better

Ongoing mental health problems hamper return-to-work outcomes

Summary:

Research commissioned by the Mental Health Foundation suggests that employees off sick with depression or anxiety may be returning to work with ongoing symptoms, and that follow-up support is often lacking. Fehmidah Munir, Catherine MacKay, Joanna Yarker, Cheryl Haslam, Aadil Kazi and Lindsey Cooper discuss their findings.

SICKNESS absence is a major public health and economic problem. Evidence suggests that most long-term sickness absence is due to mental health problems such as stress, depression and anxiety. It is well recognised that depression and anxiety are associated with work stress and are one of the most prevalent causes of work-related ill health and of working days lost through…

Dr Fehmidah Munir, Professor Cheryl Haslam and Aadil Kazi are members of the Work and Health Research Centre, Loughborough University. Catherine MacKay is director of CMK Health Management and guest lecturer at Loughborough University. Dr Joanna Yarker is an occupational psychologist and lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London. Lindsey Cooper is a PhD student in the Ergonomics Safety and Research Institute, Loughborough University.

Author: Munir F, Mackay C, Yarker J, Haslam C, Kazi A, Cooper L

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Occupational Health at Work February/March 2009 (vol. 05/5) pp17-20

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