• Article

Productivity Losses Among Treated Depressed Patients Relative to Healthy Controls

Objectives: Estimate the productivity-related cost of depression in an employed population.

Methods: By using administrative data, annual short-term disability (STD) and absenteeism costs ($2005) were compared for patients with depression and treated with antidepressants and for a matched control group without depression.

Results: Mean annual STD costs were $1038 among treated depressed patients versus $325 among controls and $1685 among a subgroup of severely depressed treated patients versus $340 among their controls. After controlling for demographic and employment characteristics, treated patients with depression had STD costs that were $356 higher per patient and those with severe depression had costs that were $861 higher. The marginal impact of treated depression on absenteeism was $377.

Conclusions: Even when depressed patients are treated with antidepressants, there are substantial productivity losses. Therapies that can better manage depression may provide opportunities for savings to employers.

Citation

Mark, T., Curkendall, S. M., Ruiz, K., & Joish, V. (2010). Productivity Losses Among Treated Depressed Patients Relative to Healthy Controls. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 152-130. DOI: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e3181ce10a8