£70bn spent a year on mental health issues

  • 40% of 370,000 new claims for disability benefit each year are due to mental health issues, an OECD study shows.

    Thinktank have said that mental health issues are costing Britain £70bn a year and urge the government to help those with depression, stress and anxiety into work. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development have said that mental health was the cause for 40% of the 370,000 new claims for disability benefit each year. /images/mentalhealth.jpg

    An OECD study has found that the bill to the UK from a failure to cope adequately with mental health issues was 4.5% GDO each year, reports the Guardian. 

    "Better policies and practices by employers and the health system are needed to help people deal with mental health issues and get back to work," the OECD said.

    The report added that around a million claimants on employment and support allowance and as many on jobseeker's allowance and other working-age benefits had a mental disorder which hurt their prospect of finding work. It warned that those mental health problems  could be further disadvantaged by welfare cuts.

    "Some of the recent UK welfare reforms designed to tackle stubbornly high disability benefit caseloads go in the right direction. However, further improvements are needed to ensure that reforms live up to their promise to bring people into work. If welfare cuts are to be made, they need to be matched by increased efforts to address the barriers to finding and remaining in work," said the report.

    "The new Work Programme is struggling to place ESA and JSA claimants with mental health problems into work", the OECD said. "People with a mental illness continue to fare badly compared to their counterparts without such illness: their unemployment rate is more than double the overall rate; and the risk of falling below the poverty threshold is almost double the overall risk. Indeed, the risk of poverty among people with mental health problems is the highest in a comparison of 10 OECD countries including seven other European countries, Australia and the US."

    The OECD listed a series of recommendations for the UK which include a stronger focus of mental health in the workplace alongside an increase in resources for employment service providers to ensure more people with mental issues find jobs.

    Norman Lamb, Care and Support Minister said: "People with mental health conditions can and do work and the vast majority want to. That's why last summer, working with the Department for Work and Pensions, we jointly commissioned a report to look at how we can better support people with mental health problems to get back to and stay in work. This could not only help them, but helps to build a stronger economy and reduce the strain on the benefits system. Progress has already been made - the expanding Improving Access to Psychological Therapies programme has already helped over 80,000 people to move off sick pay and benefits. We are vigorously pursuing solutions and are working across Government to drive improvements. The OECD has recognised the successes we have had, but we want to go further."

    What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @suppsolutions

Related articles

  • Read More

    People in Bedfordshire can find mental health support through an audio guide

    The guides have been written by clinical psychologists and are available to download in print or listen to as an audio file, reports Bedfordshire News.Dr Judy Baxter, Clinical Director with BCCG and...

  • Read More

    Police officers in Dorset to receive mental health training

    The partnership with the University comes as part of the county’s Mental Health Street Triage Project. It is hoped to equip officers with improved knowledge and skills to assess members of the...

  • Read More

    People in Peterborough can refer themselves for mental health services

    Through a drive to offer support to more people and ease pressure on doctors, people living in Peterborough can self-refer themselves to mental health services, reports Peterborough Today.Dr Adrian...

  • Read More

    The first mental health centre for men

    The site has been set up by Alex Eaton, whose dad took his own life and has suffered with mental health problems himself, in Burton upon Trent, reports BBC Newsbeat.Mr Eaton said: "We are the only...

  • Read More

    NHS trust told no mental health beds available

    Dr Bohdan Solomka has said that on Sunday a lack of beds were applied across the NHS and among private providers, reports the BBC. The director of the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trusts...

  • Read More

    Over 16,000 mental health referrals for young people have been rejected

    Between July last year and June this year, data from the NHS has found that Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services rejected 5,396 referrals, reports STV News.Over the last three years 16,565...

  • Read More

    New mental health centre to open in Ardwick

    Plans to build a new £6m treatment and recovery centre in Manchester have been revealed. It will be built in Ardwick and be run by Alternative Futures Group, reports the Manchester Evening...

  • Read More

    Research finds more chance of re-offending if mental health issues are present

    Research has found that ex-prisoners with mental health problems and drug and alcohol misuse are more likely to commit violent offences after release than other former prisoners, reports the...

  • Read More

    Drop in the number of people with mental health issues held in cells

    Recent figures have found that the Crisis Care Concordat has seen over 10,000 people receive care from mental health nurses with the support from police officers, reports the Burton Mail.Figures have...

  • Read More

    Mental health social work scheme accepting applications

    100 places are now available for applicants who have a 2:1 or above undergraduate degree and can demonstrate attributes such as resilience and empathy, reports Community Care.The Think Ahead...

Responding to the DWP Consultation:  Housing Benefit Reform - Supported Housing "It was well-run, in a good location, and very useful.  I've only one suggestion; as the session went on it would perhaps have been useful for bullet points of general agreement about what should be in the sector response to be displayed and added to as the session went on, maybe on a flip chart. Regarding your response paper, I particularly like the answer you give to question 9.  In fact the general: "if it ain't broke don't fix it" response could be pushed harder." M.P. - Adref Ltd


Briefing Signup