Most employers offer an Employee Assistance Program to their employees but the fact is, very few actually use it. Whether you are afraid that others will find out that you are seeking treatment or you fear your employer will let you go, you should realize that EAPs benefit both employers and their employees.
Personal Problems You Don’t Want Your Employer to Know
When you are dealing with a personal issue that will require you to talk to your HR department about accessing your EAP benefits, it can be very uncomfortable. It is likely the reason that so many employees simply try to hide the problem.
However, your personal problems may show:
- Constantly Late to Work
- Calling in Too Frequently
- Noticeable Difficulty Doing Your Job
- Appearance Suffers
- And Unusual Moods or Behaviors
You are not alone. It is estimated that nearly 75% of U.S. workers are suffering from some sort of addiction. Sooner or later, if you don’t get help, you will lose your job and your income which will only make the problem worse. However, if you take advantage of your EAP benefits it can help you save your job in spite of your drug addiction or mental health issue and it keeps personnel costs low for your employer.
5 Things You Never Knew about an EAP
For the younger generation, we don’t see the same stigma attached to mental health as in previous generations. However, even younger employees have a hard time asking for help from their employers for problems that are affecting their job performance. One of the main reasons is they simply do not know that they have this benefit or what it is all about.
About the Employee Assistance Program Itself
Many employees have no idea that there is a program like this available to them. Employers spend over $350 billion dollars a year in costs related to mental illness and drug addiction. It is in both your interest and your employer’s interest to get you help before your behaviors result in:
- Costly Medical Expenses
- Bad Job Performance
- Or Workplace Violence
Number One Referrer to Treatment Programs
The majority of referrals to treatment facilities originate from an employee accessing their employee assistance program benefits.
Fear of retribution or dismissal is one of the top fears of employees and one main reason why their benefits go unused. However, federal rules governing EAP benefits mandate confidentiality between you and your counselor, you and your employer, and your employer and your co-workers. Your name is kept totally confidential in annual reports and medical billings.
Minimize Utilization of Insurance Benefits
For your employer, the benefits save them thousands of dollars in medical costs and absenteeism. Plus, since everything is handled in-house, their insurance rates go down by offering employee assistance programs.
After treatment, EAPs have been shown to:
- Result in a 65% drop in absenteeism
- An estimated 75% drop in costs for treatment
- A more than 30% drop in sick days used
- And a 65% drop in the number of on-the-job accidents
Lastly, your job is protected under the Americans with Disability Act and you can access your federal FMLA benefits if outpatient substance abuse treatment is necessary. FMLA allows you up to three months leave of absence in a calendar year for treatment.
Protect Your Job through Outpatient Substance Abuse Treatment
If through your EAP you have discovered that you do have a serious problem that will require outpatient substance abuse treatment, you can get treatment while protecting your job. You are able to continue to meet your familial obligations and you can begin learning how to live a sober life while applying what you learn to the normal stress and strain of everyday life.
Get Help from Sober Houston for Your Addiction
At Sober Houston, we have worked with many employers and employees through their employee assistance program. We know how to make those benefits work for you and can answer any questions you may have. Contact us today for more information about our substance abuse programs or to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.