Symptoms of burnout are higher than the global average for some living in several Middle Eastern countries, a recent McKinsey survey found. According to partner Mona Hammami and colleagues, a quarter of survey respondents indicated they suffer from anxiety and depression, and 55 percent said they experienced distress, well over the global average of 32 percent.

Symptoms of depression, anxiety, and distress were all higher than the global average among Gulf Cooperation Council survey respondents.

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A grid chart displays percentages from 0–60%. Dots of different colors represent mental-health symptoms, including, distress, depression, anxiety, and burnout, for 4 Middle Eastern countries: Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. Saudi Arabia scores the highest in all 4 categories, with Kuwait, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates trailing by an average of 5 percentage points. Behind the dots are 2 gray areas, signifying regional and global averages for the 4 indicated mental-health issues. The Middle Eastern countries are above the global average, particularly in the distress category, in which all are at least 17 percentage points higher; Saudi Arabia is more than 27 percentage points higher in distress. Footnote 1: Responses for mental health include: reporting having a mental-health or substance-use diagnosis now or in the past; reporting having sought or considered treatment for mental-health or substance-use condition; or having listed at least one of the following: high symptoms of anxiety, burnout, depression, or distress.

Source: Gulf Cooperation Council Employee Mental Health and Well-Being Survey, McKinsey, 2022 (n = 4,064 in 4 countries)

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To read the article, see “Better health among Middle Eastern employees can start with awareness,” January 30, 2023.