Insurance industry stuck in ‘dark ages’, say mental health advocates

Seventeen-year-old Ella Ingram was beyond excited about her upcoming school trip to New York. Everything was booked, she was ready and raring to go. But then a dark cloud descended. “I just couldn’t feel happy. I was in my room and sleeping a lot, and I just felt so, so low,” she said. “I remember saying to my mum that I felt disconnected from my friends, from my family.” Ella’s …

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The wellbeing cost of mental health hits $200 billion

The cost of mental illness to Australia’s wellbeing has hit $200 billion a year – equivalent to about 12 per cent of the economy’s annual output. The Herald-Lateral Economics Index of Australia’s Wellbeing – which provides a better measure of changes in national welfare than traditional economic data – shows the drag on our collective wellbeing caused by mental illness is worth $40 billion more than a decade ago. The index’s author, Dr …

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Workplace mental health a challenge for managers

Reported mental health issues in the workplace have risen 56 per cent in the past year, and almost half of companies in a major survey say at least one employee has committed suicide or been at risk of doing so, according to a new report. A survey of 200 companies by law firm Minter Ellison found that one-third of the firms had recorded more than 15 cases of staff experiencing …

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Let’s talk about mental health at work

“We know that it can be really hard to talk to staff about mental health and how to actually look after one another’s health and well-being.” In a recent interview, Rebecca Lewis, campaign director of R U OK? Day, told HC about how this nationwide event could help encourage difficult conversations amongst staff. R U OK? Day, which will be held on 8 September, is a powerful entry point to talk about …

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Aussie man goes viral in fight against FIFO suicides.

An Australian worker has gone viral on Facebook fighting to put a stop to the high rates of long-distance workers committing suicide. Mario Prusac is the founder of Mind Over FIFO, which is a community created for long-distance workers battling high levels of stress. Fly-in fly-out (FIFO) workers suffer from depression at more than twice the rate of the general Australian population, research from Edith Cowan University has found. Researchers …

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Queensland Health Minister Cameron Dick on mental health

The unfortunate reality is that those in our community battling mental illness are likely to endure higher rates of unemployment, have worse physical health, live in poorer housing and suffer discrimination in many areas of their lives. AS Carol da Costa-Roque observed in Monday’s The Courier-Mail our society has some way to go towards providing people with mental illness with the full understanding, care and support that they deserve. The …

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Expert calls for mental health shake-up

SBS News Mental health sufferers are stigmatised by the professionals that are supposed to be caring for them, according to a globally-renowned expert calling for a shake-up of the system. Professor Mike Slade, from King’s College London’s Institute of Psychiatry, says the current attitude of mental health professionals is one of “do what we tell you to do and you will be well again.” He says stigma against mental illness …

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Should workplaces be educating staff about mental illness?

The Sydney Morning Herald Mental illness costs Australian businesses more than $10 billion every year, with about 12 million days lost to reduced productivity annually, begging the question of why workplaces aren’t doing more to educate employees about the issue. Mental Health Recovery Institute chief executive Pedro Diaz said businesses were still trying to catch up with workplace mental health training. “In reality, mental health [education] in the workplace is about 20 …

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No, I Can’t ‘Just Relax’: How I Learned To Manage My Anxiety Disorder

Lifehacker Australia According to the National Institute of Mental Health, anxiety disorders fall along an entire spectrum. One of the most common is Generalized Anxiety Disorder, which is the closest to what I deal with, but you can also suffer from panic disorders that cause sudden and repeated panic attacks, or social anxiety disorders that tend to crop up when dealing with other people. Mental health problems don’t come in …

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Australia in the middle of “mental health crisis” with unnecessary deaths escalating

The Age Australia is in the grip of a mental health “crisis” that is leading to the unnecessary deaths of thousands, former Australian of the Year Patrick McGorry says. In a passionate plea to new Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Professor McGorry said if the government doubled the amount it spent on the direct care of people with mental illness, it would “be enough” to resolve the crisis. Suicide is the leading cause …

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