The country is starting to reopen. Restaurants and bars are seeing customers again, with limitations in place. Businesses are returning to the office at a smaller capacity than before. This does not mean that the pandemic is over, and precautions still need to be taken. One of the main precautions that can be taken all year round is virtual health and mental health visits!
Virtual health has taken off in the last couple of years with most health carriers including virtual health in their policies. The cost of virtual health visits is usually the same, or slightly cheaper, as going into the doctor. These visits are great for a cold, muscle strains, pink eye, UTIs, etc. These ailments may seem minor, but they usually require prescriptions that the doctor can prescribe over the phone! Waiting rooms are full of people with various issues, many of which can be contagious, so it is best to avoid them whenever possible. With virtual health, all you need is a phone or computer with a camera and you can get connected to a doctor. This works for mental health too!
Mental health should be talked about more often than it is, especially in the workplace. Depression and anxiety disorders are more common then we think. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults age 18 and older—18.1% of the population—every year. Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only 36.9% of those suffering from anxiety receive treatment. In 2014, 6.7% of adults in the United States age 18 or older had experienced at least one major depressive episode in the year prior.
There are many different apps and providers who offer over-the-phone therapy. While this might not be ideal for everyone—it may be hard to find privacy while everyone is working from home—it is certainly an option. There are even apps like Talkspace that allow you to text with a counselor if you need to. No one should feel like they cannot get help just because we need to stay home. There is a solution for everyone!
Mental health discussions and awareness during a pandemic are crucial as anxiety is skyrocketing and people are self-isolated, which can trigger depression.
There are many resources that can help! Everything from crisis hotlines to exercise to yoga. I am not saying these are cures, but if you or your employees are feeling extra anxious, then these resources can help in some small way. The best thing to do is talk with your employees and see what they might need in these stressful times.