Omicron Variant Adds to Employee Behavioral Health Concerns

By Margaret Faso posted 01-21-2022 10:43


The latest Mental Health Index: U.S. Worker Edition shows significant increases in risk of depression and addiction since September, reinforcing the need for employers to remain focused on efforts to advance workplace mental health programs.

Men show a sharp increase in the risk of addiction and social anxiety, up 80% and 162%, respectively, between September and December 2021.  This appears to be the result of a combination of typical holiday mental health declines, the uncertainty surrounding workplace vaccine mandates, and the Omicron surge.

Results indicate some of the worst increases in stress and PTSD seen since the Index began measuring the mental health of employees. The fast spread of the Omicron variant clearly impacted the mental wellbeing of employees, highlighting the importance of wellbeing programs that go beyond short-term solutions.

Outlook: Employers should focus on developing data-driven wellbeing programs that best suit the needs of their employees. HR Policy will continue to work with The Path Forward on driving needed legislative change to mental health policy, specifically around expanded telehealth and collaborative care model offerings.

1 view