Archive for September, 2014

Tackling stress in the workplace – UK EAPA comments in Employee Benefits

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in mental health

Easing the pressure on employees, UK EAPA talks about tackling stress in the workplace

In a recently published article, UK EAPA Executive Board Member, Eugene Farrell, talks about stress in the workplace and the range of solutions, particularly EAPs, that employers can access to talk more and begin to minimise the impact of stress among employees.

According to Eugene Farrell, it’s important for employesr to build a robust approach to tackling stress, “…including training line managers to identify warning signs, promoting EAPs and launching wellbeing initiatives that promote healthy lifestyles.”

You can read the article in full on Employee Benefits‘ website or in the October issue of the magazine.

 

UK mental health services not coping with demand, says new research

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

UK mental health services not coping with demand, says new research

The UK EAPA agrees with the importance of highlighting the latest findings from the ‘We Need to Talk’ that indicates how mental health services in the UK are not coping with current demand.

Findings from the Coalition’s report highlight that one in ten people are waiting a year between referral and assessment to psychological services and over 40% are waiting more than three months.

In light of the findings, it’s important to emphasise the role of Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs) when it comes to supporting employees who need psychological support.

“EAPs are a strategic tool that organisations can use to promote and protect the mental health of their employees. Managers are encouraged to intervene early to support employees with issues that are affecting their attendance, performance and productivity in the workplace,” says Claire Neal, Secretary of the UK Employee Assistance Professionals Association.

“With nearly half the working population (47%) having access to an EAP, according to latest UK EAPA research, it’s important to consider the role that counselling and therapeutic services available through EAPs can play to take some of the strain that’s clearly being felt by patients and practitioners. In fact, an employee seeking counselling through their EAP will receive a clinical assessment and, where appropriate, can receive their first counselling session within three working days,” she adds.

Health & Wellbeing at Work 2015 to host UK EAPA Annual General Meeting

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

Health & Wellbeing at Work 2015 to host UK EAPA Annual General Meeting

The UK Employee Assistance Professionals Association is pleased to announce that it will once again host its Annual General Meeting AGM as part of the Health & Wellbeing at Work Conference on 3 and 4 March 2015 at the NEC, Birmingham.

Full details of the AGM and the Conference’s EAP stream – which will focus around the issue of workplace conflict – will be available soon at http://www.healthatwork2015.co.uk/, where you can also find out more about registering for the event, as well as the exhibition stand and promotional opportunities that are available.

UK EAPA members are advised that a number of positions for the UK EAPA Executive Board are up for election at the AGM. Further information on the election of officers will be emailed to members in due course, but in the meantime please contact info@eapa.org.uk if you have any questions about this.

The UK EAPA will also be holding its Annual Dinner on the evening of Tuesday 3 March 2015. Places for the dinner are available on a first come, first served basis, so if you’d like to make an early bird booking for this event, please email for more information.

We look forward to seeing you there!

 

New UK EAPA Publication: Domestic Violence and EAPs

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in mental health

New UK EAPA Publication: Domestic Violence and EAPs

A new publication from the UK Employee Assistance Professionals Association takes a look at the role of EAPs specifically in supporting both employers and victims of domestic violence.

The factsheet, Domestic Violence and EAPs, discusses the key factors to consider when creating a domestic violence policy and reviews how EAPs can help to support and address this issue. It also takes an in-depth look at how one organisation has, with the full support of their EAP, helped their employees who are facing domestic violence.

You can download your own copy of the Factsheet here.

Rapid access to treatment will help employees stay in work: UK EAPA comment on the mental health of the nation

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

Rapid access to treatment will help employees stay in work: UK EAPA comment on the mental health of the nation

In her annual report on the mental health of the nation, the government’s Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies, reports that working days lost due to stress, depression and anxiety have increased by 24% since 2009 and the number of working days lost due to serious mental health illness has doubled.

Mental ill health now represents 23% of the national disease burden in the UK and is the largest cause of disability. Accounting for 70 million sick days in 2013 and costing some £70–£100 billion per year, this represents a whopping 4.5% of our GDP.

People with mental health find it difficult to get treatment in England with some 75% receiving no treatment at all. However we should remember that between 60 and 70% of people with mental health remain in work.

Absence causes difficulty in returning to work, and the longer the individual is off work, the more difficulty they have returning, employers should look at  measures in the workplace that could increase control, and  employee flexibility as these may improve mental health. The notion that ‘work is good for you’ is often used to justify a return to, or remaining within work. However, we need to consider what work? For whom? When? In what way?

The statement has been amended – ‘Good work is good for your health

There has been a 6% increase in funding for the ‘Improving Access to Psychological Treatments Service’ (IAPTS). However IAPT does not yet meet the needs of the population it serves and it should be supported to continue its work to deliver NICE recommended standards of care to all who need them.

Only 30% of the UK workforce has access to specialised occupational healthcare. Many of those with mental illness fail to take sick leave when they need it. This is often ascribed to their concerns about stigma. However, untreated mental illness reduces productivity, and this represents the biggest single contribution to the economic losses due to mental illness. OECD evidence suggests that common mental disorders reduce productivity as much as severe mental illness.

The Chief Medical Officer’s report found that rapid access to treatment could improve employees’ chances of staying in work and the UK EAPA welcomes this.

“An EAP is a workplace based program that provides employees with a direct access to counselling treatment for a wide range of mental health illnesses that affect work and home, as well as accepting employer led and occupational health led referrals for assessment and treatment. EAPs provide a fast access to mental health professionals in line with Dame Davies’ suggestion that access to treatment could improve employees staying in work,” said Eugene Farrell, speaking on behalf of the UK EAPA Executive Committee.

The mental health threat to your business – UK EAPA in Business Matters

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

The mental health threat to your business – UK EAPA in Business Matters

According to Amanda Smith, Executive Board member of the UK EAPA, mental illness is much more common and costly to employers than most realise. She reminds us that one in five adults will experience a diagnosable mental illness in any given year and more workers are absent from work because of stress and anxiety than any physical illness or injury. In this article in Business Matters, Amanda looks at the potential damage that ignoring the mental health of employees could do to your business and assesses the first steps you can take to help your business and your employees.

Contact EAPA

EAPA are pleased to accept your questions about the EAP industry. Please use the Contact us page or the form here.

Contact Form