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Mental Health and Work: United Kingdom

image of Mental Health and Work: United Kingdom

Tackling mental ill-health of the working-age population is becoming a key issue for labour market and social policies in OECD countries. OECD governments increasingly recognise that policy has a major role to play in keeping people with mental ill-health in employment or bringing those outside of the labour market back to it, and in preventing mental illness. This report on the United Kingdom is the sixth in a series of reports looking at how the broader education, health, social and labour market policy challenges identified in Sick on the Job? Myths and Realities about Mental Health and Work (OECD, 2012) are being tackled in a number of OECD countries.

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Sick on the job

The role of employers in the United Kingdom

Employers are ideally placed to help people in the workforce to deal with mental health problems and retain their jobs. This chapter first describes the link between mental ill-health and working conditions, reduced productivity and sick leave. It then discusses prevention strategies to address psychosocial risks at work as well as strategies of UK employers to deal with mental health problems at work and their role towards managing sickness absence. The chapter ends with a focus on new reforms in the United Kingdom to address sickness absence and improve early intervention in the sickness period and related implementation challenges.

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