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Mental Health and ‘Long Covid’

Thank you to everyone who took the time to complete the recent GMB survey on Mental Health and ‘Long Covid’.

There was a mental health crisis looming in the NHS prior to Covid-19. GMB had been challenging the culture within many parts of the NHS and Ambulance Service, as chronic staffing shortages, increased workloads and an increasing number of assaults and abuse at work, were having a major impact on the mental health of our members.

It’s now more than a year since the start of the Pandemic and no one can deny the impact it has had on all workers within the NHS. With burnout, exhaustion and PTSD real concerns for the future of the workforce, real attention needs to be given to mental health support for the workforce.

We don’t yet know the full impact of Covid-19. However, what we do know, is that there are also an increasing number of people suffering with Long Covid and the list of symptoms continues to grow.

Summary of results from our survey:

Almost 70% of respondents said that work was causing them stress or impacting on their mental health.
The most popular reasons for this were fears of taking Covid-19 home and for their own safety, not
being able to see family and friends, balancing work and caring responsibilities and financial pressures.
Over 52% of respondents stated that their employer does not provide adequate support for workers
after they return to work after a mental health issue.
Over 42% of respondents stated that their employer hadn’t appropriately supported or managed
changes in their work environment during Covid-19.
Over 85% of respondents strongly or somewhat agree that compared to 12 months ago, working during
Covid-19 has had a serious negative impact on their mental health.
32% of respondents stated that they have had Covid-19.
Over 41% of respondents believe they have suffered with long covid, and over 33% of those have had to take further time off work because of long covid symptoms. These absences have been treated in a variety of ways by different employers, as have the additional support measures which have been implemented.

GMB continues to campaign for improved access to mental health support at work, for a just and learning culture, and for recognition, pay protection and a flexible approach to individuals suffering with long covid.

If you are having work related issues due to mental health or long covid please contact your local GMB representative.

If you’re feeling stressed, anxious or depressed, or just want to feel happier or to know that you’re not alone – we have pulled together various resources as well as helplines that can help you through this.

These can be accessed online by visiting here

Posted: 12th April 2021

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