EAP NewsBrief
Sep. 3, 2014

Mercer global health management and EAP expert to address EAPA Conference
Employee Assistance Professionals Association
Dr. Wolfgang Seidl, long-time EAP leader in the U.K. and current head of Mercer's health management consulting throughout Europe, Middle East and Africa, will present the opening keynote at EAPA's 2014 World EAP Conference in Orlando. He will draw from his work creating health and well-being strategies for global corporations to illustrate the opportunities and pitfalls for EAPs in modern workplaces around the globe. As Dr. Seidl notes, "Employee assistance is at a crossroads." We can either build on the foundations of evidence based practice to meet our clients' evolving needs, or we may find that new technologies developed outside the EA field will replace the expertise of EA professionals. Don't miss this thought-provoking and eye-opening look at "Work, Love, and EAP in the 21st Century."More

Small rewards might lead to big results in alcohol abstinence
Virginia Tech University via Medical Xpress
Recovery from alcoholism is notoriously difficult. The satisfaction of a quick drink often trumps the idea of a later reward, such as better health, stronger relationships, and more stability. But now, there may be a new way to help people abstain.More

EAPA Conference registrant will win 50,000 Hilton Honors points
Employee Assistance Professionals Association
EAPA CEO, Dr. John Maynard, has notified EAPA that he will donate 50,000 Hilton Honors points as a prize to be awarded to some lucky registrant at EAPA's 2014 World EAP Conference in Orlando. The points can be used for free nights and/or upgrades at any Hilton brand hotel anywhere in the world. Hilton brands include Hilton, Waldorf Astoria, Doubletree, Embassy Suites, Hampton Inn, Homewood Suites and more. The prize will be awarded, along with other prizes donated by exhibitors and others, during one of the EAPA Marketplace Networking Coffee Breaks on either Tuesday, Sept. 30, or Wednesday, Oct. 1. To be eligible to win, attendees must be paid full conference registrants and must be present during the prize drawing in the Marketplace. Register for the conference today.More

How to address depression in the workplace
By 2020, depression will rank second only to heart disease as the leading cause of disability worldwide, according to Harvard public health professors Christopher Murray and Alan Lopez. So what warning signs should employers be alert to and what can they do to tackle stress? It is widely assumed that people suffering with depression may turn to drugs and alcohol, but it is less well known that alcoholism and drug addiction can in themselves cause depression.More

The difference between alcoholism and drunk under the ADA
The Americans with Disabilities Act protects "alcoholism" as a disability. There is a huge difference, however, between alcoholism, which the ADA protects, and being drunk at work, which the ADA absolutely does not protect. The ADA is never going to cover any employee who uses substances at work, let alone one who's in an altered state a result.More

4 signs wellness programs are here to stay
Based on the responses of more than 500 human resource professionals, the survey found several signs that employer-based wellness programs are becoming a permanent fixture in the healthcare market. Here's a summary of some indications.More

Wearing your health on your sleeve
A 2013 study from Allied Business Intelligence Inc., a technology market intelligence company, found that during the next five years more than 13 million wearable devices with embedded wireless connectivity will be integrated into company wellness plans. A five-year study of more than 300,000 adults published by The Vitality Group in April 2014 found that those who remained active as a result of a wearable activity device saw their health care costs decrease up to 16 percent.More

Expansion of mental health care hits obstacles
The New York Times
The Affordable Care Act has paved the way for a vast expansion of mental health coverage in America, providing access for millions of people who were previously uninsured or whose policies did not include such coverage before. Under the law, mental health treatment is an “essential” benefit that must be covered by Medicaid and every private plan sold through the new online insurance marketplaces. If the law’s goal is met, advocates say, it will reduce not only personal suffering but also exorbitant economic costs.More

3 common disability management questions
Employee Benefit News
As a disability consultant, I hear the same questions about employee health and wellness from benefit managers time and time again. Many — especially those at smaller companies — have never had to help an employee with an accommodation at work or help chart their path back to work after a disability leave. They just aren't sure where to start. Some disability carriers offer consultants to help guide busy benefit and HR managers through the process. These consultants can advise about everything from at-risk employees to coordinating benefits from multiple carriers. Here are some of the common problems they can help with.More

Mental illness — the workplace's dirty little secret
Mental illness is the workplace's dirty little secret. Employees want to hide it and employers don't want to hear about it. While mental illness takes a huge toll on workers who are struggling to manage their conditions and their careers, companies are also paying a price in higher health care and disability costs. Mental illness accounts for 30 percent of disability costs, and that figure is growing by 10 percent a year.More

Fighting workplace violence
Human Resource Executive Online
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently cracked down on two companies for violence in the workplace. Can your organization's violence-prevention program satisfy federal standards?More

Why suicide is a men's issue
The Huffington Post UK
Robin Williams, critically acclaimed actor and beloved comedian, killed himself in an apparent suicide recently. His death ends his ongoing struggle with depression and is a tragic reminder of the importance of understanding the epidemic that is suicide. Especially for men.More