Over the last decade the figure has risen by £3 billion. The figure does not include the impact on the NHS, just the cost on the economy caused by people taking time off work. Those who become unemployed due to mental illness are 70% less likely to ever go back to work.
The Mental Health Foundation is calling for better awareness and education about mental health issues, and more measures to help people prevent them, such as dealing with work related stress.
Andrew McCulloch, chief executive of the Mental Health Foundation said: “Depression can be a debilitating illness, affecting a person’s ability to function.
“All people, whether or not they have experience of mental ill health, should be helped to protect themselves against the most common mental health disorders – depression and anxiety. Currently, only £4m of the £4.5bn of NHS adult mental health investment is spent on promoting good mental health – less than 0.1 per cent. Greater investment in promotion would be advantageous for both the economy and society.”