Medical certificates track X-rays of mental health and guide actions in companies

A Closecare startup survey, focused on medical certification and corporate health management, shows a scenario for the exit of professionals. wool due to problems mental health. The incidence of these certificates has increased by 30% since 2020, mainly in administrative activities in companies. The survey looked at around 480,000 certificates registered on the platform from January 2020 to April 2022, collected from 16 companies that use the service.

The documents are entered into the system by importing other databases or are registered by the company manager or employee himself. The organizations are from different sectors and sizes, and ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases) F category certificates for mental and behavioral disorders have been considered. Specific conditions were assessed: episodes of depression, anxiety, and stress.

In the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic, this type of certification accounted for 3% of the total, rising to 3.5% the following year and 3.9% in the first months of this year. According to the analysis, “despite the low incidence, the certification of this group poses a high risk to companies and employees, highlighting the seriousness of the problem”. In fact, psychoemotional illnesses are the third leading cause of unemployment in Brazil – he set a record for sick pay in 2020 – and will be the main cause until 2030.

Although the number of justifications is lower than for other conditions, the average length of mental health leave is six days, 128% higher than the standard indication for other illnesses. In the case of anxiety, the distance from work rose from 3.3 days in 2020 to 4.7 days in 2022, an increase of 42%.

André Camargo, General Manager of Closecare, examines how the type of certification varies according to work activity. “In general, companies with intensive activity have a higher number of certifications than companies such as service, retail and call center, administration or technology companies. But mental health is more prevalent in companies with less intense physical activity, such as law firms, technology, multinationals, and companies with higher average wages, ”he says.

budgetary impact

Closecare estimates that each certificate costs an average of BRL 1,293 for companies, and that spending on sick leave due to mental health issues should reach BRL 5,000 million by the end of 2022. “The certificate is a document that justifies the absence of the employee and, if it is within certain rules, the company will have to pay for this absence. If you are away for six days, the company pays the amount, ”explained Camargo.

He estimates that the average monthly income of a Brazilian is R $ 2,449, according to the October 2021 National Survey of the Continuous Household Sample, and the addition of charges. The average absenteeism rate and annual cost could be calculated. The limitation of the study is that 30% of the certificates do not present the classification code of the disease due to the employee’s failure, reflecting the belief that he or she would be harmed at work due to his / her condition.

The data show what is seen in a government report on the provision of work benefits for mental and behavioral disorders between 2012 and 2016. During this period, the workers spent an average of 196 days away, creating an impact of almost R $ 8 billion. sick pay and pensions, in addition to the average cost of almost R $ 12 thousand per benefit.

It is important to note that ICD’s mental and behavioral conditions include diseases that are not necessarily associated with psycho-emotions, such as Alzheimer’s and schizophrenia. However, depression, anxiety and stress are among the leading causes of absence, according to the document, and are also more prevalent in the administration, health, retail, transport and teleservice sectors.

The leaves affect the groups

“Mental health is still highly stigmatized. It’s time for companies to take a step back and see how mature they are in tackling the issue, ”said Ubaldo Fonseca Júnior, Aon, Brazil’s director of health, quality of life and analytics and a member of the Alliance’s technical committee. for Health.Population (ASAP). The departures go beyond the budget account and he says it has an impact on the teams. “If you don’t have guidelines for implementation, those who stay will take up other activities on their own and set aside their personal lives.”

When this happens, there are many different strategies to avoid overloading professionals, and each organization adapts to its own reality. “You need to look at the staff and understand where the greater or lesser intensity of the absence is and readjust the workforce,” suggests Eduardo Marques, an ASAP consultant and executive director of People, Support and Operations at Grupo Fleury.

“Another mechanism is to replace vacancies, which can also be done with temporary professionals. The environment of those who remain must be taken care of, as it is useless to create another problem for those who want to compensate for the work, ”he added. He emphasizes that these strategies will be effective if leadership is able to perceive the environment and make interventions. Junior agrees. “The change in the profile of top leadership is very important in the coming years to achieve a non-zero impact on physical and emotional health.”

Another highlight is the ability to receive a worker when they return to work, says Marques. “It’s a focus on rehabilitation, which companies have looked at more closely.” He points out that the solutions are not simple or unique, just as mental disorders have multiple factors, as do prevention, treatment and reintegration actions: they come from individuals, society, family, government and business.

Data driving decisions

If the subjective side of mental health is not credible, the numbers represent reality and the path to follow. “There is a lot of talk about starting with a clear diagnosis to focus on effective actions. There are a lot of “off-the-shelf” products, companies that sell solutions, but it’s not worth buying a solution if you don’t know what the problem is. The first part is to invest in good diagnoses, in demographics, to know the health conditions of your population in a smarter way, ”says Marques.

Therefore, investing in tools that measure the level of absenteeism and mental health, for example, helps to guide corporate decisions in favor of the well-being of the company and its employees. “The company can understand that anxiety is a lack of physical exercise, poor economic health.”

Dr. Aon Brasil added that it is necessary to create a business culture in order to stratify the risks of people, to have an open space to understand and listen to the main requirements. “The most important thing is how the organization fits into the mental health pillar, with the data, the solutions, the support,” he says. He noted that virtual care, along with telepsychology, also helps businesses. In the area of ​​prevention, companies have seen the opening of spaces for discussion and executive coaching, in addition to the education platform, to raise awareness about the issue.

At Closecare, André Camargo sees the flow of certificates used by companies to invite employees to participate in mental health programs or activities with psychologists and psychiatrists, for example. There is also a follow-up team as an HR action strategy. “There are two factors that drive the business to grow: increasing health insurance spending and increasing the number of sick leave, the company needs to have a larger team to fill this gap,” he said.

Want to discuss professional and entrepreneurial issues? Join our team via the Telegram link or type in the @gruposuacarreira app search bar.

Leave a Comment