Government pledges mental health support for public sector workers

31 Oct 17

Employees working for the civil service and NHS England will now receive more mental health support.

The government has announced that NHS England and the civil service, two of the country’s largest employers, will abide by the recommendations of the Thriving at Work: a review of mental health and employers report.

The independent review of mental health in the workplace, released last week, was commissioned by the prime minister.

It revealed that 300,000 people were leaving their jobs each year due to mental illness.

This is costing employers between £39 and £42bn a year while the UK economy loses out on between £74bn and £99bn due to these issues, according to the review.

Theresa May stressed that it was vital to have a cross-government plan to transform the way mental health is dealt with in schools, communities and work.

May said: “I am immediately asking NHS England and the civil service – which together employ more than two million people – to accept the recommendations [in the report] that apply to them.”

Employees of these two organisations will now be guaranteed tailored in-house mental health support.

Alongside this the two bodies will:

  • Introduce a set of core and enhanced standards, which will ensure employees have the knowledge, tools and confidence to understand and look after their own mental health – and the mental health of their colleagues
  • Have support in place to help prevent mental illness being caused or worsened by work and equip those who have a mental illness to thrive
  • Be held to account for delivering these standards by their relevant regulators so that employees can have faith they are being introduced effectively.

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