2020 was a challenging year for many people across the UK. On the 31st January 2020, the first two cases of coronavirus in the UK were confirmed and by 23rd March, the Prime Minister announced a UK-wide lockdown. Since then life hasn’t been quite the same, and as a result of the pandemic, many individuals have experienced grief, isolation, loss of income and fear which has triggered mental health conditions or exacerbated existing ones. Many individuals have also faced increased levels of alcohol and drug use, insomnia, and anxiety.
Considering this, the UK’s leading health and wellbeing provider, Health Assured has analysed data from the over 13 million lives they support via their EAP (employee assistance programme) helpline and found some compelling results. These insights can help employers prepare for the year ahead and provide some much-needed support to their employees as the pandemic continues.
David Price, CEO of Health Assured, comments on the key results:
“Our data from 2020 has given us a real insight into the nation’s mental health and wellbeing. As expected, a high percentage of the calls received by our team of counsellors were regarding coronavirus, which has had a significant impact on our lives and wellbeing.
“The most popular time and day to call our EAP line was on Monday between 10:00 am to 2:00 pm as many individuals called in feeling anxious about the working week ahead and needing support.
“With many employees feeling stressed as they juggle childcare and work commitments and additional financial stressors, it’s not surprising to see that the age group with the highest service usage was from employee’s age between 30 to 39.
“Throughout 2020, the coronavirus pandemic was an emotional rollercoaster, with rapidly increasing coronavirus cases and constant rumours about incoming restrictions unnerving many individuals. Due to this uncertainty, we saw a significant 36% rise in calls to our counselling helpline for support with anxiety.
“Our research’s key finding was that our clients in the healthcare sector understandably required the most support, with a 34% increase in the amount of support Health Assured provided, followed by the education sector with a 29% increase and government with a 13% increase. Unsurprisingly these industries were at the frontline of the UK’s fight with coronavirus.
“To summarise, from Health Assured’s findings, we can see that proper mental health and wellbeing support is essential for a business as it safeguards not only employee’s health and wellbeing but also their business.
“With the pandemic still causing significant disruption in our lives in 2021 and the situation quickly changing it’s best to deal with it one day at a time.”