One in 10 Employees in Europe have Missed Work Due to Depression

1 10 2012

Few days ago I discussed the biological aspects of depression. This time I want to talk about the dire [socio] economic consequences of this serious health condition. According to a new survey by the European Depression Association one in 10 working people surveyed in Europe have taken time off work because of depression causing more than 21,000 Working Days Lost. Furthermore, this survey indicate that “the costs of depression were estimated at €92 billion in 2010 in the EU, with lost productivity due to absenteeism (taking time off work) and presenteeism (being present at work while ill) representing over 50% of all costs related to depression”.  Due to mental illness stigma “one in four of those experiencing depression stated they did not tell their employer about their problem. Of these, one in three said they felt it would put their job at risk in the current economic climate”.  Hmmm… these figures my friends are significant. I hope that policy makers read this survey and think about some effective ways to address this issue.


Here is a link to the article from which I found these interesting findings:

Did you know that…

21 02 2012

1. Labor force participation of people with disabilities are low while their unemployment rates are very high. This situation represents a loss to both the unemployed individuals as well as to the whole community’s productivity and work structure.  Today, there is growing awareness of the role of work in promoting or hindering mental wellness and its corollary, mental illness. While part of the reason for the above-stated low rates of employment may be individuals’ inability to work due to symptoms of their health conditions and disabilities, labor force characteristics and problems with the supported employment services, there is reason to believe that a substantial additional amount reflects stigma and discrimination.  Such discrimination-based unemployment, may, in turn, exacerbate disability and itself enhance the inability to find the strength to rejoin the working force.

2. Work has a central role in the lives of anyone, including persons with disabilities. The opportunity for persons disabilities to engage in “mainstream” employment can enhance their quality of life not only via their increased economic well-being but also enhanced activity, social contacts, self-esteem, illness self-management, community tenure, and integration into the community.  Conversely, unemployment may lead to a pattern of dependency, boredom, alienation, meaninglessness and hopelessness, lack of fulfillment, loss of self-esteem, social exclusion, poverty and even an increased risk of early death.

3. Most people with disabilities want and can work!

4. Hiring people with disability is good for your business. Do good and do well!

More about business case on disability in the next posts.