To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what estimate he has made of the number of working days lost by each armed forces branch as a result of staff mental ill health in (a) 2010 and (b) 2019.
The Ministry of Defence (MOD) takes the health and wellbeing of its personnel very seriously. A Health and Wellbeing Strategy for all MOD employees, military and civilian, was published in mid-2015 (updated in August 2016) and is designed to provide guidance to the Chain of Command and civilian line managers on how to manage the health needs, both mental and physical, of their people. The aim is to maximise the number of people fit to work, managing people back to work after a period of sickness, so that they are fit and able to meet the requirements of Defence outputs, including operational effectiveness.
Whilst the MOD records the medical employability and deployability of Service personnel, more specific information about the level of sickness absence in the Armed Forces is not held centrally. As at 1 January 2020, medical employability for the trained UK Armed Forces was 98.4 per cent.