Global Healthcare Report Reveals Shocking Rise in Mind Health Concerns Among Expatriates

4 in 5 (80%) non-native employees are experiencing negative mental health symptoms as a direct result of their working environment. Worrying findings from the fourth non-native Mind Health Report produced by leading international health insurance provider, AXA - Global Healthcare, show that workplace wellbeing has continued to decline for non-native employees.

The report, ‘A Global State of Mind’, detailed findings from a study of 1,458 non-native workers across 16 countries, and finds that almost half (49%) of non-native employees have experienced burnout as a result of their job, along with a range of mental health conditions:

  • 54% report trouble sleeping
  • 53% report a loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities
  • 51% difficulty concentrating
  • 48% report feelings of worthlessness
  • 48% report a loss of self-confidence
  • 37% report appetite or eating disorders

Incidence of mental health conditions among non-native workers has risen by 10% since 2022, yet there has been a 9% decrease in the number of non-natives seeking professional help to support their wellbeing. Over a third (38%) are self-managing their condition; an interesting result given that more than a quarter (29%) were dissatisfied with their company’s psychological support services. However, 62% of those who self-manage their mental health have admitted that their conditions are not well-managed.

The findings make clear that non-native employees are struggling significantly more with their mental health than working natives. Non-native workers are 22% more likely than natives to attribute their mind health conditions to working factors, and are also more likely to experience symptoms, such as a loss of pleasure in usual activities (18%), feelings of worthlessness (20%) and appetite or eating disorders (16%).

More than a quarter (27%) of non-native employees have been on sick leave once or more for problems relating to their mind health over the last 12 months – 17% higher than sickness rates among their native peers. Non-natives are also 50% more likely to have been on sick leave multiple times across the last year.

The findings paint a troubling picture of an increasingly unhappy non-native workforce struggling with burnout, sickness and disengagement at work. Employers must invest in the right support and take proactive steps to close the mind health gap between their native and non-native employees or face significant consequences to staff retention and business success.

Speaking on the findings, Xavier Lestrade, CEO of AXA - Global Healthcare commented, “It’s a concerning trend to see that mind health among the non-native community has been worsening year-on-year. The pandemic years have impressed upon employers the need to support good health among their employees, but effective mental health support is becoming paramount for companies to create a healthy working environment.

“Health insurance policies which offer dedicated mental health support in multiple languages can help businesses to bridge the wellbeing gap for their non-native workforce, ensuring that the experience of working overseas remains successful and rewarding for both individuals and businesses worldwide.”

To read the full findings of the 2024 Global Mind Health Report, please visit: 

AXA has been protecting the healthcare needs of globally mobile citizens for more than 60 years. Offering cross-border health insurance to businesses and private individuals, we support customers living in more than 190 countries.  Our constantly evolving propositions build upon decades of experience in global healthcare and the local knowledge and capabilities of AXA’s healthcare businesses across the world. We offer customers care and support though a 24/7 global virtual doctor service, second medical opinion and personal case management services as well as evacuation and repatriation assistance. And to make sure customers get speedy access to medical treatment wherever they are in the world, they have access to AXA’s global medical network.  

AXA - Global Healthcare is committed to driving a diverse workforce and promoting gender equality. We are part of the AXA Group – a global insurance company with more than 93 million clients worldwide.

AXA - Global Healthcare: Global Healthcare Report Reveals Shocking Rise in Mind Health Concerns Among Expatriates

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