Objective: Mental health conditions are associated with a significant burden on individuals. Using data from a large population health survey, the present study aimed to quantify the burden of emotional disorders (depression and anxiety) on health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in the region of Catalonia (Spain) for evidence-informed policy making. Methods: Regression models were used to estimate the impact of emotional disorders on HRQoL, controlling by socioeconomic factors and somatic health problems. The rate of emotional disorders was based on the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) and quality of life scores were based on the EQ-5D. Results: The impact of emotional disorders on HRQoL was equal to a reduction of 0.17 in the EQ-5D score. Translation of this individual impact to population figures yielded a total loss of 78,742 quality-adjusted life years (QALYs) for 2006. This strong impact highlights the need for global policies aiming to reduce this burden. Conclusion: The negative relation between emotional disorders and the HRQoL of individuals was confirmed and quantified for the population of Catalonia. The use of quality of life scales such as the SF or EQ-5D, combined with data on quasi-specific health conditions provides substantial information for prioritizing and planning health programs.