Employees highlight lack of mental health support from managers – survey

Are companies prepared enough? Is virtual care the answer?

Employees highlight lack of mental health support from managers – survey

A new report from virtual healthcare platform Dialogue Health Technologies Inc. has found that 62 percent of missed work days stem from employees having to address their mental health. The report highlighted that over half (58 percent) of surveyed employees believe their managers lack preparedness to support their mental health needs.

A third of respondents admit to feeling that their employer's mental health support is insufficient or that they are unaware of the resources they have access to. Furthermore, 36 percent of remote workers have reported that their remote work setup has had a negative impact on their mental health.

“Many working Canadians face a slew of challenges when seeking mental health support, including financial barriers, lack of access to a primary care provider, or simply being unaware of the resources at their disposal,” says Dr. Marc Robin, medical director at Dialogue.

Virtual care as a solution

The majority (81 percent) of Canadians believe virtual care encourages a proactive approach to mental health, according to a 2023 Dialogue survey. Moreover, employers are estimated to gain an annual savings of nearly $200k in absenteeism costs and over $218k in presenteeism costs per 1000 employees. Members who have access to Dialogue’s mental health services also report recovering over four hours for every virtual care appointment on the Dialogue platform.

“Anxiety and depression have become 25 percent more prevalent in the last few years. Organizations invest in virtual care services to offer easy, centralized access to the right resources, which helps employees be engaged and aware of the benefits available to them to manage their mental health,” Robin adds. “Reaching them early on is very impactful on their journey towards remission.”

Collaborative care models that combine therapists and doctors, such as Dialogue's, help mitigate worsening mental health symptoms. Members report a 40-50 percent improvement in anxiety and depression symptoms, with a 40 percent decrease within the first month alone based on standardized mental health assessments.