Employees Are Not Alright
Blurred lines between work and home, financial pressures, and continued isolation, are ushering in a new kind of mental health crisis.
Physically, the impact of loneliness is comparable to smoking 15 cigarettes per day. Emotionally, over 80% of employees report that recent events have negatively impacted their mental health and 65% say it’s affecting their ability to work, according to mental healthcare navigation platform, Lyra.
The workforce is grappling with unprecedented challenges, from COVID-19 anxiety and economic instability to realigning family responsibilities, and the devastating effects of racial trauma.
ArmadaCare creates and delivers a broad range of insured specialty employee benefits, including WellPak insurance solutions which are designed to provide support and coverage for employee mental health. Ed Walker, CEO, and Charlotta Winslow-Jenkins, chief marketing and product development officer, break down ArmadaCare’s newest offering: a one-stop shop for mental health coverage addressing everyday stressors as well as deep-seated chronic issues with a combination of clinical and nonclinical solutions.
We know that companies want to help their employees, but they need the right solution to do so. And that solution needs to address two critical areas to truly be effective. First, it needs to help access effective care. It’s extremely difficult for employees to find the right type of mental health provider. They get lost in a confusing maze and, as a result, often don’t access care at all. That barrier must be eliminated. Second, employees need financial support or coverage for treatment. This is especially key because behavioral health visits are five times more likely to be out-of-network than primary care appointments.
Having a solution that directly addresses mental health treatment coverage and access is critical when you consider the various dimensions of an employee’s wellbeing. We realize how important it is to take care of the whole person, including physical, social, financial and emotional health, and we wanted to make a difference in this underserved part of the market.
We’ve taken it even further with coverage for prescribed massage therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic treatment and other wellness treatments that can help alleviate stress. And we are committed to onboarding and engaging employees so that they understand and use their benefits from day one.
That said, we designed WellPak to support various aspects of well-being, which is more than just mental health. So, while there is guidance and coverage for those serious types of behavioral health issues, WellPak can help with simple situational stress, too. Essentially, WellPak navigates employees to the right type of support using a clinically validated, evidence-based assessment to determine the most appropriate pathway, whether that’s a well-being coach for nurturing, behavioral health coach for coping, or more intensive mental health counseling. Without such guidance, an employee may never raise their hand and ask for help. And on the coverage side, employees can use the plan for stress-reducing treatments, such as prescribed massage therapy or acupuncture.
Investing in a well-being solution isn’t just the right thing for employers to do as corporate citizens, it’s also in the best interest of the business. After all, employee well-being and performance are strongly interconnected. Left unchecked, heightened periods of stress and burnout can cause absenteeism and presenteeism, ultimately affecting the bottom line. Let’s take employees struggling with depression as an example. Research shows that 80% can be treated effectively if treated early and with the right support. And a resounding 86% of employees report improved work performance and lower rates of absenteeism.
When support for employee well-being is made an organizational priority, companies can increase employee satisfaction, decrease absenteeism and presenteeism, and increase employee engagement and productivity. Offering mental health coverage and support services can help position companies as employers of choice during and after this turmoil.
• Are we helping our clients have healthy, happy and productive employees?
• Are we helping employees reduce the stigma associated with seeking care for mental health?
• Are we helping employees gain access to support that they otherwise might not have?
• Are we doing our part as an innovator in the employee health space to address critical issues with real solutions?
• Are we helping employers take care of their employees as a whole by supporting their physical, emotional, social and financial health?