Last month, we shared the research behind the true cost of depression in the workplace. Building on our findings, One Mind Initiative at Work has launched of a unique new tool that may help transform workplace mental health and well-being. While nearly 1 in 3 working-age adults experiences a mental disorder, regardless of gender, age, race or industry, many employers still do not fully understand the impact mental illness has upon the workplace and the business imperative to take action. The One Mind Initiative wants to change that.
Mental health issues are the single highest driver of healthcare expenditure for many employers across industry. Yet many employers today still lack the quantitative information necessary to make informed decisions regarding workplace policy. Due to rising prevalence of mental illness, stigma, and lack of awareness, employees aren’t receiving access to the treatment and support they need and employers are experiencing productivity losses and mounting healthcare costs. Employer costs not related to treatment are approximately 8x the cost of treating depression and comorbid conditions. Research also shows depressed employees miss between 6 to 25 more days per year and suffer from impaired performance as much as 29% of the time at work.
In response to this need, increasing prevalence of mental health challenges, stigma and lack of awareness, the One Mind Initiative at Work has designed and launched the first tool of its kind to help individual employers measure the costs of mental illness within the workplace – tailored for their size and workforce. The Depression Cost Calculator is a free and simple to use tool that determines the cost impacts of depression based on the number of company employees, the percentage of covered employees, and a variety of other factors. The estimates produced by the Calculator are a conservative estimate based on a meta-analysis of recent, publicly available data including evidence on prevalence and expenditures, but the costs can still be staggering. The Calculator also specifically focuses on costs related to severe depression alone, just one type of mental health challenge employees may be facing.
The Calculator estimates that for a hypothetical employer with 10,000 employees, an average salary of $70,00, 55% female to 45% male employees and $70 million in total profit, the cost impacts of depression are:
- Total: $17.2 million (25% of total profit)
- Missed work: $4.8 million (7% of total profit)
- Impaired work performance: $4.5 million (6% of total profit)
- Medical costs for those with untreated, diagnosed severe depression: $4.2 million (6% of total profit)
- Caregiving for severe depression: $1.3 million (2% of total profit)
You can find the Depression Cost Calculator here to stay informed and find out how much untreated mental health conditions might be costing your company. If you want to learn more and be able to share best practices please join us at One Mind at Work (www.onemindinitiative.org ).