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Why Mental Health Matters 2015 – How do Businesses Deal With it?

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in Events

Why Mental Health Matters 2015 – How do Businesses Deal With it?


The UK EAPA is pleased to be a media partner for Maudsley Learning’s second annual one-day conference that will discuss ways of tackling mental health issues in the workplace.


Taking place on Friday 23 January 2015, ‘Why Mental Health Matters – How do Businesses Deal With It?’ features speakers including Professor Sir Cary Cooper, Professor Steven Bevan (Centre for Workforce Effectiveness, The Work Foundation), Linda Holbeche (Imperial College), Paul Litchfield (Chief Medical Office, BT Group) and Dr Steve Boorman (Chief Medical Officer, Capita PIP Assessment Services).


The conference will combine hands-on workshops and case studies focusing on areas including preventive strategies, promoting wellbeing, benchmarking best practice and flexible working.


The latest Conference programme is available to download here. And UK EAPA members can benefit from a substantial discount on bookings for the event!


The standard delegate pass is £359 (+VAT) but for UK EAPA members, places are available at the special rate of £200 (+VAT). To access this discount visit the following link – – which will automatically reflect the discount. Or enter EAPA200 in the Promotional Code box on the booking page.


New study confirm effectiveness of EAPs in helping staff overcome challenges

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

New study confirm effectiveness of EAPs in helping staff overcome challenges

The results of a new survey have confirmed that EAPs are a cost-effective solution to enable employees to overcome challenges at home and at work.


“It is significant to note that the latest XpertHR EAP research confirms a healthily competitive marketplace for EAPs and the UK EAPA would support this by encouraging any organisation that is considering implementing or reviewing their EAP offer to consider quality of service and standards of professional practice. By appointing an EAP that has achieved Registered EAP Provider status within the industry is a positive step to ensure that you’re working with an industry leading supplier and partner,” said Andrew Kinder, chair of the UK Employee Assistance Professionals Association.


The XpertHR research involved 156 organisations, two-thirds (66%) of whom offer an EAP to employees, with an additional 17% considering introducing a programme.


Notable findings from the study include:


  • 96% of those surveyed engage a third party to provide their EAP.
  • 82% of employers provide face-to-face counselling for employees and rate this as the most effective aspect of an EAP.
  • 90% provide telephone counselling and 89% have an advice or information helpline.
  • 79% of EAPs utilise online resources – an increase from 51% in 2009.
  • The average annual running cost of an EAP was £14.85 per employee.
  • 66% of employers say their EAP completely or partially justified its cost. Not one employer said it did not.


You can read the latest XpertHR EAP research in full here.

UK EAPA publishes guide for counsellors working with EAPs

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

The UK EAPA has published a new guide to support counsellors working with Employee Assistance Programmes.


The ‘Counsellors’ Guide to working with EAPs’ discusses the clinical and commercial aspects of EAP delivery, as well as the practicalities of working as a counsellor in an EAP context. It also offers some hints and tips for affiliate counsellors to support their work with providers.


Neil Mountford, Vice Chair of the UK Employee Assistance Professionals Association, who has led the development of the Guide, said:


“The Guide has been developed to offer practical guidance and information for counsellors and psychotherapists who are already working with EAPs, as well as those who wish to begin work in this area. It’s important to remember that every EAP provider works slightly differently and will have their own processes and procedures for delivering counselling to their clients. This means it’s not possible to create a definitive guide for counsellors to work with EAPs, but the subjects covered in this new UK EAPA publication certainly address the principal issues that any counsellor should be aware of.”


You can download a copy of the ‘Counsellors’ Guide to working with EAPs’ from the UK EAPA website.

New EAPA President writes to UK members

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in News

In a letter to UK EAPA members, newly elected EAPA President, Lucy Henry, calls for all members to take responsibility for the employee assistance profession and work together to grow the industry.


Dear UK EAPA members


It is with great humility that I step into the role of President of EAPA. In taking on this role it is my desire to see our Association grow and become much more inclusive to our members outside of the US.


The theme of this year’s EAPA Conference in Orlando was Imagine and in my President’s speech I asked those present to think about who influenced them to become a part of this Association and what that meant to them. I ask you to do the same.


Our profession is changing and unfortunately we are losing members and not bringing in new members. I believe we can truly thrive as an Association but every person has to take responsibility for this. We need to be initiating conversations with younger professionals and we need to talk to them about belonging. I know that for me when I became a part of EAPA I found a home. I know that you did as well. We are a community in how we love and support each other. We are here for one another in the good times and the bad. Let’s imagine the great things we can do when we have new voices and creativity that moves us forward. As we move forward to a new day let us celebrate all that we have experienced and let us celebrate what lies ahead. All things are possible to us if we imagine and believe.


I look forward to continued conversations with you and hope to see the UK Branch grow and thrive in the days to come. Please feel free to contact with me questions or comments at any time. My email is


Thank you for what you give to our Profession. My best to you!


Lucy Henry


UK EAPA welcomes first national waiting time targets for mental health

Written by Vicky Mulchinock on . Posted in mental health

Steps announced last week by the Government to support improvements in the delivery of mental health services is an important move towards enhancing the mental health of the nation, says UK EAPA.


“Ensuring those who are experiencing mental health distress can quickly access appropriate services is vital to supporting their recovery, as has been demonstrated by the employee assistance industry in recent years,” says Andrew Kinder, chair of the UK EAPA.


Research conducted by the UK EAPA in partnership with CORE IMS (2012) confirmed the effectiveness of workplace counselling through EAPs to support and promote employee health and wellbeing and reduce levels of psychological distress in the workplace.


EAPs have always provided quick access to treatment, as shown by the UK EAPA study of 28,000 clinical interventions which demonstrated EAPs offered speedy interventions which minimised the time individuals are required to wait for professional support. In fact, the study indicated that on average 92% of EAP clients were accepted for treatment in just nine days.


It also highlighted that 80% of EAP clients were estimated to have completed their counselling intervention with 70% of those people demonstrably showing recovery or improvement following their counselling intervention.


“The success of EAPs when it comes to getting employees back to work quickly following incidents of mental distress supports the Government’s intentions to guarantee treatment for those needing talking therapies and counselling from next year. It’s a model that has worked successfully in the EAP industry for over twenty years and ensures that nearly 14 million people in the UK today can receive the psychological help them need exactly when they need it most,” said Andrew Kinder.

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, 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 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.

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