Work and Wellbeing
The law of unintentional consequences has meant that measures introduced to minimise the direct impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on public health have resulted in new challenges for individuals and companies alike.
Economic uncertainty, along with job insecurity or loss, inevitably has an impact on the mental health of those whose livelihoods are under threat. In fact, an ONS report published in August 2020 (based on survey results from respondents followed over a 12-month period) indicated that the incidence of depression may have almost doubled since the pandemic took hold on the UK. There is also growing evidence that difficulties in accessing medical care for condistions other than COVID-19, during and post lockdown, has left people at greater risk of morbidity from illnesses that would ordinarily be treatable if caught at an early stage.
Adapting to new styles of working has also presented new challenges. Employers need to be aware of their obligation to protect the health of employees working both onsite and remotely – and sensitive to how those with underlying conditions may require additional support as long as the pandemic affects our daily lives.
As the furlough scheme draws to a close (albeit with a more modest job protection scheme taking effect on 1 November) and social distancing is necessary for the foreseeable future, it is clear that businesses need to pivot their operations to support their employees’ mental and physical health while safeguarding the longterm viability of their enterprises.
Equally, for organisations that are still able to sustain normal turnovers and workforces, robust help and awareness for employees struggling with health challenges exacerbated or brought about by the pandemic will be essential for ongoing resilience of their organisations.
Read more from Imperial’s experts…
The pandemic’s impact on daily lives will be greater and more enduring than Brexit
Professor David Miles, explored the different effects of COVID-19 and Brexit on the UK economy at a recent event. Read about “COVID-19 and Brexit – the journey through troubled waters”.
What has been the toll on mental and physical health of locking down the economy?
Professor Carol Propper analyses the consequences for the treatment of illnesses other than COVID-19 and the correlation between recessions and a significant increase in chronic conditions.
Impact of COVID-19 on our daily lives and the economy
Imperial’s Business School is contributing its thought leadership to the unprecedented economic and financial implications of the pandemic.
The Future of Work: Exploring how and where we might do our jobs
Does a surge in home working spell the end of the traditional office? Our panel of experts unpicked the benefits and the challenges of any changes to how and where we do our jobs
How seven minutes of mindfulness each day can make you a better colleague
Laura Noval explores how using mindfulness can improve your interactions at work
Coronavirus: How the UK government can balance the economy and public health
Simplistic restrictions – or their easing – can put both public health and the economy at risk
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