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Published on: Press & Media

Two thirds of economically inactive people with long-term illness report mental health problems

Analysis of official data by IPPR found that while mental health issues such as anxiety and depression are affecting people of all ages, young adults (20-29 years old) out of the labour market because of sickness are 50 per cent more likely to report a mental health problem than older working-age adults (60-65).

It found 2.5 million people are inactive because of their health, which is allegedly the “highest level since records began”, and attributed the rise in economic inactivity to sickness among young adults. Inactivity has risen by two fifths (42 per cent) among 25-34 year olds, versus 16 per cent among 50-64 year olds.

HR consultant Gemma Bullivant said her clients were reporting “exceptionally long NHS waiting lists for mental health services” because it is overwhelmed, and that; as a result, employers needed to put more thought into their benefits packages. “Employers need to consider this wider context when establishing both their benefits framework and working practices in relation to physical and mental health,” said Bullivant.

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