The U.S. inflation rate continues to drop. However, at more than 6%, it remains three times higher than the historical rates of the past decade. A recent survey of U.S. workers by TELUS Health offers insight into how this historically high rate affects their spending and, by extrapolation, their mental health.

The survey suggests that the majority of paycheck earners are weathering the one-two punch of the pandemic and inflation fairly well. TELUS has developed a "mental health index" that measures overall mental health on a scale of 0 to 100 points. Since TELUS began tracking this index, the most recent score shows an improvement. But one in six of those surveyed are struggling with one or more key elements of good mental health, an indication that plan sponsors and their allies should be reaching out to plan members with assistance.

The latest score–72 points of 100–represents "a significant improvement from December 2022 and on par with the highest level since the Index began reporting scores in April 2020," TELUS said. The survey showed that 21% of respondents have a high mental health risk, 42% have a moderate mental health risk, and 38% have a low mental health risk

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.