1 in 4 employees in South Africa have been diagnosed with depression, according to the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag).
Sadag's Cassey Chambers says many more employees suffering from depression have not sought professional help.
Those employees with depression had taken of at least 18 days off in a year to treat their depression.— Cassey Chambers, SADAG operations director
Chambers says companies need to take mental health seriously, as it affects productivity and the bottom line.
She says that many individuals and organisations are not well informed about their rights and responsibilities.
A lot more needs to be done in the workplace to support the employee better and empower the employer on how to cope better with mental health.— Cassey Chambers, SADAG operations director
Even when an employee [with depression] is at work, they are not being productive.— Cassey Chambers, SADAG operations director
Chambers explains that depression can have a negative impact on concentration, problem-solving, decision-making, multitasking.
She advises that companies need to support staff with mental illnesses in order to improve productivity.
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This article first appeared on CapeTalk : SA companies ignore staff's mental health at own peril, warns Sadag