An EAP is an Employee Assistance Program that can improve your bottom line by raising productivity, lowering absenteeism, and reducing turnover at a minimal cost to the employer. Issues included under an EAP vary, but here are some examples:
- Major life events such as a death or accident
- Emotional distress
- Family, personal, or work relationship issues
- Substance abuse
- Mediation services
- Debt counseling
Currently an EAP is considered a supplement to comprehensive medical coverage and not subject to the ACA reforms, but starting in 2015 it would have to satisfy the following requirements:
- It does not provide “significant” medical care benefits.
- The benefits under the EAP cannot be coordinated with benefits under another group health plan. For example, participants in the other group health plan must not be required to exhaust benefits under the EAP (e.g., a gatekeeper EAP) before an individual is eligible for benefits under the other group health plan.
- No employee premiums or contributions may be required as a condition of participation in the EAP.
- There is no cost sharing for benefits provided through the EAP.
If you currently offer a benefits package to your employees, this is a good time to consider adding this valuable program to your portfolio.
For more information on implementing an Employee Assistance Program, please contact Aisha Hartford, Director of Client Services at 1-800-462-6435 Ext. 233 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.