37% increase in employees seeking work-related stress support

Paul Avis 430

The number of calls concerning work-related stress that employees made to Canada Life Group Insurance’s employee assistance programme (EAP) service increased by more than a third (37%) year on year, according to research by Canada Life Group Insurance.

The research, which was based on calls between January and May 2016 made to EmployeeCare, the employee assistance programme provided by Canada Life Group Insurance alongside its income protection products, also found that 45% of all mental health-related calls were regarding anxiety.

The research also found:

  • 28% of calls made between January and May 2016 were regarding mental health issues, such as anxiety, depression and work-related stress; this is an increase of five percentage points from 2015.
  • The number of calls about anxiety increased by 15% year on year.
  • 26% of mental health-related calls between January and May 2016 were regarding depression, compared to 31% in 2015.
  • The proportion of employees experiencing feelings of anxiety fell by 45 percentage points after individuals received counselling.
  • 23% reported feelings of depression after receiving counselling support, compared to two-thirds (66%) before undergoing counselling.

Paul Avis (pictured), marketing director at Canada Life Group Insurance, said: “EAPs are a valuable additional service, as staff can benefit from them on a daily basis without having to be at the stage of making an insurance claim. Often used as a work-life support service, EAPs are also essential when it comes to supporting staff with mental health problems. The negative impact of stress at work has been very well documented, yet employers often don’t know how to respond. It is clearly not an issue that is going away, with significant annual uplift in the number of stress-related calls.

“Anxiety perhaps receives less attention than stress, but it is clearly a prevalent issue, representing nearly half of mental health related calls. In its most severe form, anxiety can be incredibly debilitating and detrimental to an employees’ physical and mental health.”