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Cost of Mental Health
Mental Health
5 Minutes
Cartoon person inside the outline of a brain.

Mental health burdens on society and workplaces are at the top of the financial expenditures of modern societies. With 1 out of every 5 adults suffering from some sort of diagnosable mental illness, the costs of care amount to about 36% of long term disability claims and 70% of paid benefits in Canada. The global direct and indirect costs of mental health diseases are estimated to be 2.5 trillion US dollars. While for most diseases, the direct treatment costs comprise the majority of the expenditure related to the disease, in the case of mental health, the cost of unemployment and decreased productivity is a major part of the economic burden.

We need a comprehensive solution to support people who are facing mental health problems.

The most common of the mental illnesses are mood and anxiety disorders accounting for about 60% of the mental burdens in Canada. While traditionally, medication is considered to be the first line of treatment, for mood and anxiety disorders, psychotherapy is widely accepted. Specifically, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) has been proven to be as effective and sometimes more effective than medication in the treatment of mild to moderate depression and anxiety. Those who received treatments were able to return to work 30% faster than those who did not.

CBT is based on the idea of retraining one’s thoughts (cognition) to train and improve their behavior. Typically, a qualified psychotherapist spends time with the patients and teaches the techniques of CBT in order to help reconfigure their thinking and guides them into improving their behavior. The teachings and techniques are consistent, yet the way they apply in each patient’s case may vary requiring individualized feedback.

Modern technology and digital health have enabled streamlining CBT lessons using online therapy. This allows for more patients and caregivers to take advantage of the positive results of CBT and help patients shorten their disability claims. For insurance companies, it allows a reduction of the costs of mental health claims while helping patients get back to their productive days faster. Everyone wins in the end.

Employees should put behavioral health as the central part of their benefits and wellness program to support their employees’ mental health.

OPTT Inc. specializes in creating value for mental health professionals whether in the insurance realm, hospitals or telemedicine companies. We empower those taking care of mental health patients to provide therapy to a larger number of their patients, faster, more effectively, and with more favorable results.

For more information visit us at www.optt.ca.

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