In an interview with Canadian SME Business Magazine, Rebecca Smith, Director of Group Life & Disability Services at Medavie Blue Cross, shares her insights on workplace mental health and the impact of COVID-19.
“Mental health has become the fastest growing and leading cause of disability claims in Canada today (accounting for 30 per cent of claims and 70 per cent of costs). Collectively, we talk about it more, hear about it more in the news and in the workplace, and we have become more aware and more likely to seek treatment. As employers continue to grapple with the incidence of mental health in the workplace, new innovations are enabling profound and positive impacts.”
Evaluate benefits plan
Rebecca encourages small businesses and entrepreneurs to evaluate whether their current benefits plan sufficiently address the mental health needs of their employees, adding that an investment in the health and wellness of employees can have a positive impact on the company’s bottom line.
Conversely, mental health issues can consume up to 14 per cent of an organization’s net annual profits, according to Medaca Health Group, which partners with Medavie Blue Cross to offer a unique disability management model that integrates early psychiatric intervention with virtual Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
Help is available
Rebecca describes recent initiatives Medavie Blue Cross has undertaken that employers could implement to benefit their employees.
“We are enhancing the delivery of services, leveraging the speed of digital solutions and updating plan designs to offer higher benefit maximums for services associated with mental health practitioners,” Rebecca says. “We’re also expanding the types of mental health practitioners that we cover, including counselling therapists, psychotherapists and psychoeducators.
To read Rebecca’s chat with CanadianSME, click here.
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