91 percent of Irish workers experienced anxiety during Covid-19 2 months ago

91 percent of Irish workers experienced anxiety during Covid-19

"The coming months are going to be incredibly challenging..."

91 percent of Irish workers have experienced anxiety during Covid-19.

New research has shown that one in three employees in Ireland are vulnerable workers with an underlying health condition.

Four in 10 workers report struggling to deal with everyday life during the pandemic, while one in 10 are seeking professional help.

The study, conducted for Laya Healthcare, included over 1,000 workers across all industries and sectors. The research found that one in three employees have been living with underlying issues such as asthma, diabetes or cardiac issues - issues that are likely to lead to increased anxiety upon returning to work.

"These results highlight the implications we must consider as we try to work and maintain ‘business as usual’ during a pandemic," said Sinead Proos, Head of Health and Wellbeing at Laya.

"The majority of Irish workers (91 percent) reported some level of anxiety, in part due to concern about getting sick from Covid-19, family and friends getting sick and worrying about a second surge."

Proos added that to protect workers with underlying illnesses, companies need to invest in education, training, and resources.

"The total cost of returning employees to workplaces could well be in the region of €10 billion," she said. "The coming months are going to be incredibly challenging.

"Early intervention and a culture of resilience needs to be prioritised to manage people’s mental and physical wellbeing long-term — both for those working in the office and remotely.

"Irish employers should ask themselves, ‘is my workforce coping, and if not, do we have the right tools to support them over the coming months and years?'."

The research also found that 30 percent of workers experience loneliness and isolation while working from home, with 40 percent citing reduced interaction with work colleagues. 

The vast majority of people have not taken any sick leave since March and 62 percent have taken fewer holidays than usual.