When you think of the array of circumstances that can knock a person out of commission and prompt a claim for workers’ compensation chances are good that the mind turns to physical injury. But mental conditions that stem from job-related situations may also be covered. Determining whether one has a viable disability claim for such circumstances, though, is best done in consultation with an attorney.

Public health experts around the globe know the risk of mental health conditions on the workforce. The experts tell us that depression can be caused by merely witnessing a traumatic event. A workplace accident that leaves a co-worker seriously injured or dead might be an example.

The World Health Organization of the United Nations recently issued a report noting that while back injuries are the most common form of disabling injury, depression is number two. Afghanistan reported the highest rate of disabilities related to depression, while Japan had the lowest. Their findings were reported by the BBC.

Researchers came to their conclusion by looking at data collected in 2010 from around the world. They then compared instances of reported depression against more than 200 other injuries or diseases that had caused disability.

In addition to determining that depression is so prevalent, scientists determined that only a small percentage of sufferers got the care they needed to recover. That has apparently prompted the organization to launch an initiative to raise awareness about mental health concerns with policymakers around the world.

There is some speculation among some experts that the issue could be even more troubling than the numbers let on. They note that mental health issues often carry such a stigma that victims suffer in silence. They say that’s a situation that obviously needs to change.

Source: BBC.co.uk, “Depression: ‘Second biggest cause of disability’ in world,” Helen Briggs, Nov. 5, 2013