Depression and suicide have a serious impact on businesses. Previous estimates total depression’s toll on business to be around $70 billion from health expenditures, absenteeism, lost productivity and performance mistakes from employees who do not seek treatment.
It’s important to be prepared by having a smart business plan for employee depression. Employee Assistance Programs offer a broad range of services, including psychological assessment, counseling options, support and referrals. It is in your company’s best interest for your business and your employees to have this as an effective and necessary attribute to ensure appropriate mental health care.
A recent study examining the financial impact of 25 chronic physical and mental issues identified depression as the single most expensive ailment for employers.
Smart Business for Depression
A systematic program to identify depression and promote effective treatment has been shown to not only improve clinical outcomes, but overall workplace outcomes.* When employees are given access to care for depression, studies have shown that businesses may save as much as $10,000 a year per employee in prescription drug and wage replacement costs.** Additionally, integration of depression intervention for patients with depression, heart disease, and diabetes significantly improved control of all disease states, not just depression.***
Did you know?
- 35 million Americans (more than 16% of the population), and 121 across the globe, experience depression. (National Institute of Health, 2003)
- Less than 25% of those with depression are getting help for their disease, simply because of negative perception, poor branding, and stigma. (World Health Organization, 2010)
- 10% of the workforce is currently depressed, and 75% of those suffering from depression do not actively seek treatment. Of those with depression, only about 6% receive adequate treatment. (Unheralded Business Crisis in Canada, 2000)
- Stress overload in the workplace from economic, environmental, social and psychological factors increases our risk for depression, fatigue, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. (James L. Wilson DC, ND, PhD, 2012)
- Depression accounts for over $70 billion annually in medical expenditures, lost productivity and other costs among U.S. businesses. (The Wall Street Journal, 2001)
Best Business Practices
- Integrate depression prevention and treatment in Employee Assistance Plans (EAP) programs, and improve utilization of programs.
- Release caps on number of visits to mental health service providers, and eliminate copays for their visits.
- Show leadership of de-stigmatizing efforts of depression by having your corporation support mental health nonprofits, participate in cause marketing campaigns for your products for mental health or depression (if applicable), and participate in company-wide fundraisers for mental health.
- Ensure that you positively and proactively
- Train executives and managers at all levels on early identification of depression.
- Write policies to support managers on dealing with depression related issues.
- Implement programs that encourage healthy work practices, and create health index to monitor success of both individuals, and overall company.
- Support depression nonprofits, showing employees your proactive stance on treatment, and encourage participation in programs like the Field for Hope to advocate rebranding.
- Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss ways to get involved.
Depression is treatable. iFred’s mission is to eliminate the stigma of depression and encourage those suffering from any form of depression to seek treatment. By partnering with iFred, corporations and organizations can help support this cause and encourage healthy living for employees. iFred will work individually with partners corporations to offer tailored programs to engage, motivate and inspire employees to shine a light of HOPE on depression.
*Telephone Screening, Outreach, and Care Management for Depressed Workers and Impact on Clinical and Work Productivity Outcomes, 2007.
**The Unhearalded Business Crisis In Canada; Depression at Work, 2000.*