As the conversation about mental health and mental disorders among workers in SA intensifies, it has become increasingly apparent that many employers still do not fathom, or want to fathom, the magnitude of the problem. Studies have shown that this country’s workforce is among the most vulnerable to mental health issues in the world, with depression and anxiety top of the charts. Depression costs SA more than R232bn — or 5.7% of the country’s GDP — a year due to lost productivity, according to a study in 2017 by the London School of Economics and Political Science. Spending on mental health increased more than 80% between 2011 and 2016, reaching R2bn, according to Discovery. It often seems that one in every two people I interact with is on some sort of antidepressant or anti-anxiety medication, while questioning half the time whether they could, in fact, be bipolar or suffering from some other form of mental disorder. In office corridors, we compare notes about the best pill to take...

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