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One in 10 workers take time off for depression

1st October 2012

The results of a survey of 7,000 people have found one in 10 take sick days and miss work because they are suffering from depression.

depression

The MORI poll surveyed people in Britain, France, Spain, Italy, Denmark, Turkey and Germany.

It was carried out for the European Depression Association and discovered that people in Britain, Germany and Denmark had the highest likelihood of taking time off work because they were depressed.

Out of all the people surveyed, a fifth said they had received a formal diagnosis of depression.

Over a quarter of Britons (26%) had been given a diagnosis of depression. This was the highest rate in the survey, while people in Italy had the lowest rate of diagnosis (12%).

People in Germany (61%), Denmark (60%) and Britain (58%) had the highest likelihood of taking time off work, compared to the lowest proportion of time off in Turkey (25%). 

The average number of days taken off for depression was 36, but in Britain the average was 41 days compared to just 23 days in Italy. 

Emer O'Neill, chief executive of the Depression Alliance, said: "We have moved forward significantly. Depression and anxiety is being talked about more and is more widely recognised. GPs are more receptive."

"In addition, employers are increasingly coming to groups like us to help them provide support and put procedures in place to allow people to go through this illness like they would any other."

Dr Vincenzo Costigliola, president of the EDA, said: "The results of the survey show that much needs to be done in raising awareness and supporting employees and employers in recognising and managing depression in the workplace." 

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