The Importance of Mental Health Measures in the Workplace — Now and After the Pandemic — Occupational health and safety

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The Importance of Mental Health Measures in the Workplace — Now and After the Pandemic

Of course, the coronavirus pandemic has forced employers around the world to rethink the safety of their employees on many levels. However, many do not realize that mental health is an important part of worker health and safety.

Mental health resources are crucial for worker well-being at all times, but the pandemic is only putting additional emotional strain on workers. Employers must look for ways to better support their workers not just with safety precautions like PPE, social distancing and virus testing, but by providing them with the right mental health resources.

Using workplace mental health metrics is a great tool for employers to monitor worker well-being, says a Forbes article. Mental health metrics provide real-time information on how well the the workforce manages amid COVID-19 and other disruptive and stressful events. The pandemic has already had an impact on people’s mental health. Now, employers can play a vital role in helping employees help themselves.

A workplace mental health project, the Mental Health Index: American Workers Editionco-sponsored by the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchasers, HR Policy Alliance and One Mind and produced by Total Brain, helped fill this need.

Each month, the index presents updated results from a random sample of hundreds of American workers, on topics such as risk for anxiety and depressive disorders, emotional awareness and negativity. The results give employers ongoing insight into the evolving mental health impacts and where the needs are greatest.

For example, data from July 17 showed that the risk of depressive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and general anxiety disorder among American employees had each increased by at least 40% since February. While the reopening of some businesses appeared to help some people emotionally/mentally, the worsening infection rate and cases across the country means people will likely be emotionally strained in the long term.

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