Within 395 respondents, 76 (19.2%) indicated that they faced issues surrounding mental health within the settings of schools. That is almost 1 in 5 of all respondents, suggesting that issues surrounding provisions for mental health in workplaces (ie. confidentiality, leave entitlements, insurance) do matter to a considerable number of Singaporeans.

11 (2.8%) indicated that they faced issues of confidentiality and privacy at workplaces. Most shared their worries about their employers accessing their public health records, including the Civil Service.

  • Respondent #15: “I started and am still seeing a private specialist because I did not want my employer to be able to have access to medical records.”
  • Respondent #270: “Lack of confidentiality (as an issue), past doctors have said that they would be required to disclose conditions to employers.”
  • Respondent #105: “I also do not provide my IC number to the hospital where I am seeking treatment. I know of colleagues in the Public Service who have refrained from going to IMH because they fear that their visits will not be confidential. I am concerned about electronic health records that will allow doctors to see all our healthcare. I do not want to be reducible to my mental illness (i.e. have everything attributed to my mental illness).”

6 (1.5%) encountered issues with claiming work insurance for their mental health conditions. Some lament the lack of parity for coverage between physical and mental health conditions.

  • Respondent #224: “Many insurance companies do not allow claims regarding mental health. I have medical coverage at my workplace but they do not accept my IMH claims. This should be addressed. I am someone with a decent income so I can still afford the cost, but for someone else this might be a factor that stops them from continuing treatment.”

21 (5.3%) talked about the importance of flexible work arrangements (FWAs), not only for those suffering from mental health conditions to seek treatment during the day, but for caregivers as well.

  • Respondent #124: “(Recommendation for) flexible work arrangements, most specialists only have weekday appointments but not all employers are willing to work around this.”
  • Respondent #270: “Workplaces can also be more accommodating to caregivers in terms of flexible work arrangements, yet maintain a sustainable source of income for caregivers, especially those who are sole breadwinners like myself.”

8 (2.0%) felt that sick leave entitlements for mental health conditions should be improved, as some are forced to utilise their annual leave to seek treatment.

  • Respondent #123: “Being diagnosed with a mental health condition is still deemed to be a liability, especially when applying for jobs. I did not declare it for my first three jobs and would take my personal annual leave when I had to attend medical appointments.”
  • Respondent #146: “The opening hours of the (mental health) clinics are also not conducive to working adults who may not have the leave availability or flexibility to go for mental healthcare appointments or treatments. Not every employer would be able to understand or even accept that an employee has a mental condition and allow time off for such visits.”