Healthcare Organizations Discuss Mental Health of Their Own Staff

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A CommPRO News Update

helathcarecan200A study has shown that over 500,000 Canadian residents are away from work each week because of a mental illness, with the most affected employees being members of the healthcare workforce.  These lost work days cost the economy over $51 billion a year.

Today, a panel will be held during the National Health Leadership Conference (NHLC), held June 6-7, 2016 at Ottawa’s Westin Hotel to explore the settings that are essential to a patient and employee’s psychological health.

“Stigma, stress, anxiety, depression and burnout are common workplace-related conditions in healthcare,” says Bill Tholl, President and CEO, HealthCareCAN. “Healthcare workers tend to feel like they’re invincible. So many others depend on them for care that they can neglect their own well-being, or fail to recognize that they sometimes need help too.”

Research shows that employees working in healthcare sectors are 1.5 times more likely than others miss time due to illness or disability. Nearly half of physicians say they are burnt out. In all, 1 in 3 workplace disability claims and 70% of disability costs are related to mental illness, a cost which used to be largely caused by back pain and other soft tissue causes for disability.

Due to this rise in mental health issues, the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) and HealthCareCAN are working together to focus on the issues and needs of the healthcare workplace.

This work is part of a three-year case study to follow how more than 40 organizations are implementing their National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace. The standard — a first-of-its-kind in the world — is a voluntary set of guidelines, tools and resources focused on promoting employees’ psychological health and preventing psychological harm due to workplace factors.

The NHLC lineup includes provocative plenary speakers, panels, and more than 30 concurrent sessions and poster presentations. These promise to galvanize the community around the theme of “Pathways to Innovation and Change”. Visit www.nhlc-cnls.ca for more information.

HealthCareCAN is the national voice of healthcare organizations and hospitals across Canada. We foster informed and continuous, results-oriented discovery and innovation across the continuum of healthcare. We act with others to enhance the health of the people of Canada; to build the capability for high quality care; and to help ensure value for money in publicly financed, healthcare programs.

Learn more about our organization at www.healthcarecan.ca. Follow us on Twitter: @HealthCareCAN or Facebook: healthcarecan.soinssantecan.