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Jul 22, 2022, 07:59 ET
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Despite 33% surge in risk of general anxiety and 12% rise in stress February – May 2022; June saw general anxiety risk tumble 39% and stress fall 15%
SAN FRANCISCO and WASHINGTON, July 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — For many, sun, sand, and sea breezes are the antidote to stress and anxiety. Recent findings from the Q2 2022 Mental Health Index: U.S. Worker Edition support the notion that summertime fun is good for your mental health. From February – May 2022, stress levels went up 12%, risk of general anxiety rose 33%, and risk of PTSD jumped 57% amid growing inflation, a declining stock market, a seemingly unending war in Ukraine and the emergence of the stealth BA.2 omicron variant. Yet, despite ongoing health, economic and social chaos, June data shows a markedly different story. In June, stress levels dropped 15%; risk of general anxiety plummeted 39%; and risk of PTSD plunged 31%. Further, February – May 2022 saw a 42% swell in risk of social anxiety with a subsequent 22% drop in June.
The data reinforces how critical collective periods of recovery are to the emotional wellbeing of our workforce.
"Total Brain has been monitoring U.S. workers’ mental health for more than three years," noted Matthew Mund, CEO, Total Brain. "There is an interesting pattern of mental health improvements each June likely induced by a vacation state of mind. Subsequently, we see a decline in mental health assessment scores in September – the dreaded "back-to-school" season. So, while we are cautiously optimistic based on the data in June; history tells us that people need to be prepared for emotional and cognitive declines come fall. Their ability to assess and monitor their mental health is more important than ever."
The Mental Health Index: U.S. Worker Edition, powered by Total Brain, a mental health monitoring and support platform, is distributed in partnership with the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions, One Mind at Work, and the HR Policy Association and its American Health Policy Institute.
Margaret Faso, director, Health Care Research and Policy of HR Policy Association said, "Despite improvements in the index results employers recognize improving mental health is not a linear process. Maintaining flexible work policies that help reduce both stress and anxiety and improve employee satisfaction will remain key priorities for HR executives."
"The data reinforces how critical the benefits of collective periods of recovery are to the emotional wellbeing of our workforce," said Michael Thompson, National Alliance president and CEO. "This downtime pays huge dividends in improved effectiveness and engagement of the people who we rely on to drive results in our organizations."
Christina McCarthy, executive director of One Mind at Work said, "We are seeing employers move to a longer-term response to COVID, and at an employee level the summer offers more opportunities to take breaks or maybe even go on vacation. However, we anticipate that the impacts of COVID in terms of stress and anxiety will remain for many and urge employers to continue to take this moment in time to review and adjust their mental health strategies to provide even better support for mental health."
The full Q2 2022 Mental Health Index results can be found here. For additional insights, there will be a complimentary 30-minute webinar on Friday, July 22 at noon Eastern. Register here.
Methodology: The Mental Health Index: U.S. Worker Edition contains data drawn from a weekly randomized sample of 500 working Americans taken from a larger universe of Total Brain users. The Index is NOT a survey or a poll. Data is culled from neuroscientific brain assessments using standardized digital tasks and questions from the Total Brain platform. Participants include workers from all walks of life and regions, job levels, occupations, industries, and types of organizations (public vs. private). The brain assessments used to compile the Mental Health Index were taken weekly from the first week of February 2020 until the week starting June 20, 2022, inclusive. The two weeks from March 21 to April 3 (inclusive) were compared to the last two weeks of June 13-16 (inclusive).
About Total Brain Limited (ASX: TTB): Total Brain Limited is an applied, integrative neuroscience company, based in San Francisco and Sydney, that has developed and offers Total Brain, a mental health monitoring and support platform powered by the world’s largest standardized brain database. Its SaaS platform has helped more than one million registered users to-date scientifically measure and optimize their brain capacities while managing the risk of common mental conditions. Benefits for providers include improved patient outcomes, tracking of evidence-based outcomes across the continuum of care, and a reduction in clinician fatigue. Benefits for populations and payers include better mental healthcare access, lower costs, and higher productivity. For more information, please visit www.totalbrain.com and follow on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
About the National Alliance: The National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions (National Alliance) is the only nonprofit, purchaser-led organization with a national and regional structure dedicated to driving health and healthcare value across the country. Its members represent private and public sector, nonprofit, and Taft-Hartley organizations, and more than 45 million Americans spending over $300 billion annually on healthcare. nationalalliancehealth.org
About One Mind at Work: Launched in 2017, One Mind at Work is a global coalition of leaders from diverse sectors who have joined together with the goal of transforming approaches to mental health and addiction. One Mind at Work now includes more than 90 global employers and 18 research and content partners. The coalition covers more than 8 million people under its charter. onemindatwork.org
About HR Policy Association: HR Policy Association is the lead organization representing Chief Human Resource Officers at major employers. The Association consists of over 390 of the largest corporations doing business in the United States and globally, and these employers are represented in the organization by their most senior human resource executive. Collectively, their companies employ more than 10 million employees in the United States, over nine percent of the private sector workforce, and 20 million employees worldwide. These senior corporate officers participate in the Association because of their commitment to improving the direction of human resource policy. hrpolicy.org.
About American Health Policy Institute: American Health Policy Institute is a non-partisan non-profit think tank, started by the HR Policy Foundation, which examines the practical implications of health policy changes through the lens of large employers. The Institute examines the challenges employers face in providing health care to their employees and recommends policy solutions to promote the provision of affordable, high-quality, employer-based health care. The Institute serves to provide thought leadership grounded in the practical experience of America’s largest employers. Their mission is to develop impactful strategies to ensure that those purchasing health care can not only bend the cost curve, but break it, by keeping health care cost inflation in line with general inflation. americanhealthpolicy.org.
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‘This too shall pass away’ this famous Persian adage seems to be defeating us again and again in the case of COVID-19. Despite every effort