Two thirds of healthcare staff affected by significant stress levels

May 15, 2018

As Mental Health Awareness Week takes place, a study has revealed that people working in healthcare are amongst the most stressed in the UK.

Two thirds of those working in healthcare reported suffering from significant levels of work-related stress, according to a study of 3,000 UK workers – making them amongst the most stressed employees in the UK, behind financial services (69%) and Government (68%).

Work was significantly more likely to cause stress and emotional strain for healthcare workers than any other aspect of their lives.

48% of healthcare workers reported experiencing stress relating to money and finances, 47% relating to loved ones and family life, 39% relating to their own health and wellbeing and 35% relating to romantic relationships.

Almost all of those working in healthcare (95%) admit that stress has a tangible impact on their lives, with the most common consequence being sleep loss, which affects 58%.

Almost 1 in 2 (47%) healthcare workers suffer anxiety as a result of work-related stress. Stress worker at desk

As part of the study 2018 UK Workplace Stress Report – carried out by employee benefits platform Perkbox – a stress ‘heat map’ of Britain has also been published, showing the parts of the UK that suffer the most with this kind of strain.

Research revealed that those aged 25-34 are most likely to face stress brought on by work, with almost three quarters (73%) experiencing it.

Chieu Cao, CMO & Co-Founder at Perkbox, said: “The healthcare industry is notoriously high pressured and so it makes sense that it’s the sector which has the third highest levels of stress in the UK.

“Today’s hectic family schedules naturally take their toll on our lives, however despite this, it is still work that is proving to be the biggest stress factor for Britons. Those aged 25 to 34 are the most affected – most likely because this can be a particularly pressured time in their career as they fight their way up the ladder and perhaps even take on more work or responsibility in order to prove themselves. Quite often people at this age will also be saving to buy a house, organising weddings or even starting a family.”

Healthcare workers are amongst the most stressed workers in the UK, ahead of those working in professional services and education sectors (both 65%) and just behind those employed within financial services (69%) and local and national Government (68%).

Chieu continues: “There are many things people can do to manage their stress levels – from taking the time to exercise, reducing the amount of time they spend working at home close to bedtime and taking time out to enjoy hobbies. But the onus isn’t just on them.

“It is in employers’ interests to ensure that workers are not feeling overly stressed – and the data clearly shows that, in some industries, there is a more urgent need for bosses to take action than in others. It is particularly worrying that almost 1 in 2 healthcare workers suffer anxiety as a result of work-related stress. Taking the time to recognise workers’ efforts, introducing health and wellbeing schemes which give staff the opportunity to take time out and do things that will reduce their stress levels and organising regular one-to-ones with supportive managers are just some of the things employers can do to ensure their workforce is not overly burdened with job-related stress.”

To find out more, click here to view or download the 2018 UK Workplace Stress Report.

Perkbox works to help companies increase motivation and engagement among employees, making businesses more inspirational place to work.

The online platform provides access for employees to snap up incentives and rewards, earned through their workplace.

For more information about Perkbox and to book a demo, visit

The most stressful industries to work for in the UK:

Financial services – 69%

Local and national Government – 68%

Healthcare – 66%

Professional services and education (joint) –  65% (both)

Hospitality – 64%

Media – 63%

Retail – 60%

Manufacturing – 59%

Admin and supportive services – 55%

Information and communications – 53%


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