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Insurers: Employers will pay more in the long run for ignoring mental health issues

Spending for treatment of mental health and substance abuse disorders was expected to total $280.5 billion in 2020, up from $171.7 billion in 2009.
Credit: WavebreakmediaMicro

BUFFALO, N.Y. — There’s no denying the pandemic was the cause of increased levels of stress, anxiety and depression.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the number of people who reported anxiety or depression during the pandemic jumped from one in 10 to four in 10 between early 2019 and early 2020. A Kaiser Family Foundation survey found 32-36% of adults reported difficulty sleeping or eating, 12% reported increases in alcohol consumption and substance use or worsening chronic conditions.

Figuring out the cost for employers and the health care system is a different story. Even before the pandemic, the cost of treating mental health was on the rise. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, spending for treatment of mental health and substance abuse disorders from all public and private sources was expected to total $280.5 billion in 2020, up from $171.7 billion in 2009.

Read the full story from our partners at Buffalo Business First.