When you think of occupational health and safety at work, it may seem easy to focus on the physical health of your employees. Recent research has highlighted the issue of mental health among the workforce, and has been exposed to many potential risks due to the effects of the global epidemic of COVID-19.
Work-related mental health
The HSE (Health and Safety Officer) has shown worrying results about mental health at work in its 2019-2020 report. According to research, 51% of new and long-term work-related illnesses are due to stress, depression or anxiety, which has a major impact on business; Because it has resulted in the loss of 17.9 million working days.
Since the publication of this report, the potential effects of the epidemic on people’s mental health have become clearer, which is likely to lead to more cases of work-related mental illness.
A report from the Lloyd’s Register, which surveyed 5,500 workers in 11 countries, gave a clear picture of the Corona epidemic. In fact, the report found that 70% of employees surveyed experienced an increase in work-related stress between March and December 2020. This was related to the common complaints of labor shortages, which led to working longer hours and more workload.
The effects of long-distance work also caused damage, with 17 percent of those surveyed saying they now felt isolated and isolated.
This statistic in mental health is likely to continue for several years after the end of the epidemic. A new report from the Center for Mental Health suggests that following the coronary heart disease, a five-year shadow will be cast on the mental health of the drawers. Affected are those who have personally dealt with this crisis; Like people who had to be hospitalized, or those who lost loved ones, or those who worked on the front lines of the disease during the crisis.
As the mental health crisis and lack of services accelerate, businesses need to take steps to support the peace of mind of their employees, and jobs that meet ISO 9001 and ISO 45001 can be ideally placed to address this issue.
Obtaining ISO and supporting the mental health of employees
ISO 45001 is an international standard for occupational health and safety. The standard has a very comprehensive view of workplace safety; This means that it can help your organization to support the mental health of employees as well as their physical safety.
ISO requirements mean you need to identify the potential needs, expectations and risks of your team that include any potential stress at work that could adversely affect their mental health. For example, do employees work in high-risk environments? Do they work in sensitive situations?
By identifying these issues by obtaining ISO 45001 and meeting the requirements, you can discover the need for any mental health support and start the goals and plans that you decide to present in the field.
Another standard that can help you support mental health in your workplace is ISO 9001, the quality management standard. Obtaining ISO 9001 may not be as obvious a choice as ISO 45001; But the ISO 9001 standard emphasizes employee well-being, and in addition to ISO 45001, it brings many benefits to your organization and your employees.
Section 7.4 of the ISO 9001 standard focuses on the environment for the operation of the processes, which means that you need a productive environment for staff so that they can work to their full potential and create consistent quality. In addition, creating such an environment means that you have to focus on human as well as physical factors.
For example, people should be encouraged to have a calm, constructive, dynamic and non-discriminatory environment; They should also be as stress-free as possible.
The benefits of feeling satisfied and the health of body and soul
Considering the mental health of your team can be of great benefit to your business, including:
- Improve employee satisfaction
- More employee longevity
- Better productivity
- Reduce the number of sick days
- Improve business flexibility
With these benefits in mind as the mental health crisis grows, now is a good time to start assessing the mental health needs of your workplace and taking steps to support the well-being of employees and their mental and physical health.
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