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Professionals unsure of how to manage depression and anxiety disorders in the workplace

“Only 51 per cent of professionals are comfortable managing the work performance of someone with depression or an anxiety disorder, and only 61 per cent feel comfortable working with a colleague who has a mental health condition.” beyondblue Deputy CEO Clare Shann

Beaton Research & Consulting and beyondblue: the national depression initiative today released data on awareness levels and attitudes regarding depression and anxiety disorders among professionals in Australia. The survey, designed in conjunction with  Research & Consulting’s 2011 Annual Business and Professions Study (ABPS).

Results reveal that although 47 per cent of professionals are confident in their ability to support a colleague with depression, anxiety or a related mental health disorder, professionals generally have low confidence in their own skills and knowledge to manage mental health problems in the workplace effectively. 

Almost 18,000 respondents completed the optional beyondblue survey. The survey results indicated professionals believe their organisation is not well equipped to manage mental health issues in their workplace.

beyondblue Deputy CEO, Clare Shann said: “Studies like this provide a foundation for professional organisations to consider how they can build awareness and increase the skills of managers to better respond to, and manage, depression and anxiety disorders in the workplace. It’s great news that professionals are becoming more aware of depression and anxiety disorders – but it is vital further work is done in this area.”

Each year, Beaton Research & Consulting teams up with a pro bono partner to address an issue of community interest. This is the second time Beaton has partnered with beyondblue.

Director of the Annual Business and Professions Study at Beaton Research & Consulting, Mel Chee said: “Beaton Research & Consulting is pleased to partner with beyondblue again to look at issues and attitudes around depression and anxiety disorders in the workplace. Positively, 82 per cent of professionals recognise that depression and stress are not the same thing. Of more concern however, the survey results emphasise professionals are not confident in their ability to manage workplace mental health.”

Aitken Partners is a proud to partner with beyondblue: the national depression initiative.

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