7 Need-to-Know Mental Health Stats for Employee Benefits Professionals

February 21, 2023

First Stop Health

As 1 in 5 American adults experience a mental health concern each year, it’s important to provide employees with the best benefits to support their mental wellbeing.1 Employers recognize these needs and mental health initiatives will remain a priority for employers this year. In fact, almost 9 in 10 employers plan to switch to high-performing health and wellness benefits to better support employees.2,3  

To highlight some reasons to implement value-based, digital-first mental health services, we’ve rounded up 7 need-to-know mental health stats:  

  1. The National Council for Behavioral Health revealed “77% of counties in the U.S. are experiencing a severe shortage of mental health providers” and it’s expected to worsen. With virtual care, access to mental health programs is expanded and barriers to care are removed. 
  2. Patients are waiting 5 to 6 weeks to see a mental health professional for support. Patients can connect with mental health professionals quickly and in a convenient environment using virtual care, removing time and space barriers.  
  3. PCPs (primary care physicians) are the primary mental health managers for most patients. A virtual primary care program is another means to expand mental health support and provide whole-person health guidance.  
  4. Nearly 80% of mental health providers have seen an increased demand for support, 60% said they cannot accommodate new patients and 46% said they are unable to meet the demand for mental health needs. Virtual care can remove geographic barriers and provide access to mental health providers who are taking new patients and are available in just a few days.  
  5. 1 in 3 patients in need of mental health support skipped care due to cost. With certain virtual mental health programs, appointments are available at little-to-no cost for patients.  
  6. Aside from cost barriers, 50% of Americans do not get the mental health support they need due to other personal deterrents. Whether it’s taking time off work, finding childcare, transportation, or stigma, virtual care expands the environments in which patients can get care and removes many personal barriers.  
  7. Demand for mental health is exceeding the supply of providers and mental health diagnoses are on the rise. The cost to treat plan members with different mental health conditions increased 6% (an average of $9,991 to $10,600). Virtual mental health benefits that run outside of the group health plan do not incur claims and decrease employer healthcare spending.

About First Stop Health (FSH) Virtual Care 

FSH virtual care solutions are comprised of Primary Care, Urgent Care and Mental Health, and deliver patient-first care to members where and when they need it. Virtual Primary Care connects members to doctors in less than 5 days on average. It consists of urgent, preventive and chronic care to help coordinate and manage the many touchpoints of members’ healthcare journeys. With Virtual Urgent Care (Telemedicine), members have access to 24/7 urgent care for episodic health concerns. Virtual Mental Health provides counseling to members, and in conjunction with Virtual Primary Care guidance and medication management, leads to better whole-person health. Our digital-first approach expands access to healthcare for our members and provides care that people love.® 

  1. https://mhanational.org/issues/2022/mental-health-america-adult-data 
  2. https://www.benefitspro.com/2023/01/26/what-employers-should-prioritize-in-2023-mental-health-and-cost-containment/ 
  3. https://www.benefitspro.com/2023/02/13/9-in-10-employers-plan-to-change-health-and-wellbeing-vendors-in-next-2-years/ 

Originally published Feb 21, 2023 3:50:59 PM.