In the UK, over half a million workers suffer from mental-health related conditions, this equates to more than one in seven employees. There’s never been a better time to take action and look after your colleagues and employees.
Providing better mental health support in the workplaces can save UK businesses money every year, but more importantly it is proven to improve staff morale and helps to reduce the risk of tragedy.
It’s not surprising that workplace stress contributes to around 34% of all mental health problems in the UK, since we spend most of our waking time at work. This really emphasises the importance of training your workforce to respond appropriately to workplace mental wellbeing issues raised in the workplace.
This year’s theme for mental Health Awareness Week is anxiety. Anxiety is a normal emotion in us all, but sometimes it can get out of control and become a mental health problem.
Lots of things can lead to feelings of anxiety, including exam pressures, relationships, starting a new job (or losing one) or other big life events. We can also get anxious when it comes to things to do with money and not being able to meet our basic needs, like heating our home or buying food. But anxiety can be made easier to manage.
Focusing on anxiety for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week will increase people’s awareness and understanding of anxiety by providing information on the things that can help prevent it from becoming a problem. At the same time, we will keep up the pressure to demand change – making sure that improving mental health is a key priority for the government and society as a whole.
Mental Health in the Workplace
Around 70 million working days are lost each year due to poor employee wellbeing. This is a stark contrast to 2016/2017 which saw around 12.1 million lost work days.
The cost to UK employers for lost working days equates to around £2.4bn.
The importance of First Aid for Mental Health
First Aid for Mental Health ensures that your employees understand the importance of assessing mental health within the workplace and understanding the potential effects on those who may be suffering from mental health issues.
Mental health problems need to be talked about more in the workplace, and gradually we are recognising that mental health is as important as physical health. The right training can help employees to know what to look for and ways in which they can provide aid to those that may be suffering.
Safety First’s ‘First Aid for Mental Health’ Courses
The Safety First team provides a range of Ofqual regulated, nationally recognised ‘First Aid for Mental Health’ qualifications.
The following awards are available to teams via onsite training, which can be delivered as daytime, twilight, evening or weekend courses.
- Level 1 (RQF) First Aid for Mental
Health Awareness – half day course giving a basic introduction to mental health, suitable for staff at all levels
- Level 2 (RQF) First Aid for Mental Health
One day course suitable for those wishing to act as mental health first aiders, or to complement the skills of physical first aiders.
- Level 3 (RQF) Supervising First Aid for Mental Health – two day course suitable for those overseeing mental health arrangements