Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Depression and anxiety hit social workers

THREE social workers were off work from stress, anxiety or depression for more than 300 days in total, new figures show.

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The Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council workers were off 100, 97 and 107 days from the 12 months from October last year. One has returned to work, a council report said.

Stress, anxiety and depression was the reason for most abscences, about a third, from the department, which is having to make budget cuts.

The council says sickness causes “significant” problems as cover needs to be brought in.

It comes as the council revealed it faces a bill of £844,000 because it has not provided care quick enough for patients who are ready to leave hospital.

This creates “bed blocking”, causing major jams and low availability of NHS beds.

It owes £448,000 to the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust for previous years and is expected to face a £396,000 bill for this financial year.

Solihull adult social services has a budget of £50m this year compared to £57m in the previous two years.

And it is expected to overspend by £2.2m. Reserves will be used to reduce this to an expected £707,000.

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