By Human Resources Communications on February 21, 2019
When faced with life’s challenges, UBC employees and their dependents have access to many supports. In this issue of Benefits FYI, you’ll find three different scenarios. We highlight the dilemma at hand, as well as the supports available to help you navigate those situations and find solutions, or at least make them more manageable. You may be currently facing a similar situation or maybe you aren’t, but you’ll have the knowledge you need to reach out for support.
Rico’s Challenge: When you need to support your mental wellbeing – at work and at home
Rico would like to learn more about work-life integration. He’s feeling overwhelmed and often finds himself worrying about work, even when he’s at home trying to focus on caring for his family. He feels anxious and worries it’s putting a strain on his personal and professional relationships.
How EFAP and UBC’s Extended Health plan can help:
UBC’s Employee & Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider, Morneau Shepell, offers confidential counselling and consultative services to help you and your dependents find solutions to any challenges, including anxiety, work-life integration and relationships. Their experienced professionals are available 24/7: in-person at various locations across BC, over the phone in multiple languages, via video, or through First Chat.
To book services or to learn which service is right for you, call the Shepell Care Access Centre at 1-800-387-4765 or visit www.worklifehealth.com. (Note: Please enter “University of British Columbia” as your organization.) Whether you’ve used Morneau Shepell before or are using them for the first time, know what to expect when you access EFAP services.
Through UBC’s Extended Health Plan, you can access counselling services from a licensed psychologist, registered social worker or registered clinical counsellor and be 100% reimbursed up to a maximum of $2,500 for each person enrolled per benefit year. For more details, refer to your UBC Employee Group.
How HR resources can help:
UBC Human Resources offers a range of programs and resources to help individuals improve their mental health and resiliency and support UBC workplaces that want to enhance the mental health and wellbeing of its staff and faculty. Visit our Mental Health page for more information.
Katie’s Challenge: The emotional toll of caring for an ill family member
Katie’s father has been living with her for the past two years. He’s physically capable of caring for himself, but is financially dependent on Katie and her partner. Recently, he was diagnosed with gout and is having difficulty coming to terms with the diagnosis and the diet changes his doctor advised him to follow. Katie would like some advice for herself as a caregiver and also for her father to support him through this diagnosis.
How EFAP can help:
EFAP is available for eligible staff, faculty, retired employees, and their dependents. Dependents include spouses and children, as well as parents that are financially dependent on the employee. Because Katie already enrolled her father in EFAP, they can both access Morneau Shepell’s support services.
For Katie’s father, a counsellor can help him cope with health changes. He can also receive nutrition advice and health-related consultations from naturopathic doctors, registered dietitians and nurses over the phone. As a caregiver, Katie can support her own emotional wellbeing through counselling. Confidential email or e-counselling for psychological support is available, which Katie might find useful since she enjoys writing and journaling.
Did you know you can add your parents to your EFAP coverage as long as they live with you and are financially dependent on you? To add an eligible parent to your EFAP coverage, complete this form and send it to the appropriate UBC Payroll Office for processing:
Attention: Payroll Services
TEF3 – 5th Floor, 6190 Agronomy Road
Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z3
Finance Operations & Strategies
ADM006 – 1138 Alumni Ave
Kelowna, BC Canada V1V 1V7
Bruce’s Challenge: When gambling isn’t fun anymore
Bruce has always enjoyed a night out at the casino with friends. A few months ago, after comments from a family member regarding the amount of time he spent gambling, he switched to online poker instead. He also recently had to sell his car to be able to pay his rent. Bruce is feeling increasingly self-conscious about his gambling and has begun to question whether or not his habits are cause for concern. He would like to talk to a counsellor about his situation and also needs help figuring out his finances.
How EFAP can help:
EFAP has many addictions-related articles including this one on understanding gambling addiction. EFAP provides confidential short-term, in-person counselling that can help Bruce talk about his concerns and determine if he has a gambling addiction. An EFAP counsellor could help him develop coping strategies and practical tools for abstaining from addictive behaviour, with the goal of maintaining abstinence over time. Bruce can also access First Chat, a confidential chat platform that provides online support any time of day.
Bruce can also access financial consultations over the phone to help with budgeting and debt reduction. If the situation requires specialized care or long-term counselling, Bruce could be referred to a counsellor within the community and be covered through UBC’s Extended Health Plan.
For a list of additional resources at UBC and within your community including help lines, support groups, and harm reduction and treatment options, visit the Substance Use and Addiction Support Resources page.
Do you have questions? Contact the Health, Wellbeing & Benefits team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Human Resources Communications on September 21, 2017
UBC’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) is a confidential and voluntary counselling support service that provides you and your family with the help you need to resolve a wide range of personal, work, health or life issues. Expert information and immediate support resources are available in-person and by phone, video, web or mobile app.
UBC’s EFAP service provider, Shepell, provides both short-term counselling and work/health/life consultations to all eligible UBC faculty and staff and their dependent family members, at no cost to users other than the cost of your monthly premiums. EFAP is also available to UBC retirees and eligible surviving family of UBC faculty and staff who enrol in this program through the Retirement & Survivor Benefits Program.
Overview of EFAP Services:
- Available for all eligible UBC staff, faculty and their dependents, as well as UBC retirees and eligible surviving family members
- Provides accessible, confidential, voluntary and immediate (if needed) counselling
- Short-term, solution-focused counselling
- Available 24/7, 365 days
- Categories of services include:
- Counselling (i.e. anxiety, relationships, stress, depression, addiction)
- Work/health/life consultations (i.e. health coaching, nutrition, family and eldercare support)
- Professional advice (i.e. financial, legal, and career advice)
- Counselling available via eight modalities including in-person, phone, instant chat, e-counselling, video, online group counselling, and self-directed learning (Health & Wellness Resource kits)
- Additional services include online programs for stress management, relationship, separation and divorce, financial planning, and smoking cessation
- My EAP app gives access to immediate, confidential and secure access to EFAP on any mobile device
What you can expect when calling Shepell’s Care Access Centre (CAC):
Shepell’s CAC is available 24 hours, seven days a week, at 1-800-387-4765. When calling the confidential CAC, after the language prompt, there are three selections:
- Press 1 for immediate counselling
- Press 2 to schedule an EFAP service based on need
- Press 3 for critical incident debriefing (for onsite crises)
Emergency counselling services are available. If you are experiencing a personal crisis and require immediate counselling services, call 1-800-387-4765, choose your language preference, and press 1 for immediate access to a counsellor. If you want to arrange an in-person counselling session during this call, an appointment will be set up within 24 hours.
Clients can make requests for specific needs and the general wait time to see a counsellor in person is within five business days (non-emergency counselling). If you have specific preferences, you may have to wait longer than five business days. For example, if you request an in-person appointment with a female counsellor in Burnaby on a weekend, you may wait longer than five business days.
In-person counselling through EFAP is available at many different locations. Shepell’s main offices are located in downtown Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby, Coquitlam, Surrey, Kelowna and Kamloops. Other private offices in the Metro Vancouver and the Okanagan are also available.
What you can expect when making a counselling appointment:
Clients should approach counselling, and their counsellor with an open mind.
The scope of EFAP is to provide short-term, solution-focused counselling. While there is no set limit to the number of counselling sessions a person can use, it is meant to provide short-term, solution-based counselling to assist with specific issues. Referrals can be made based on the counsellor’s assessment for issues that may require long-term, on-going support.
Counselling for crises/traumatic events and critical incident debriefing assistance at a department or faculty are available with a quick turnaround time. Either a HR advisor or a HR manager at a department or faculty can contact Shepell to request this service (different from a personal crisis situation).
All EFAP services are confidential and UBC is not informed of the identity of those using EFAP services.
All Shepell counsellors have a minimum of a Master’s degree in a related field and a minimum of five to 10 years of EFAP counselling experience in a variety of clinical areas. In-person, telephone and video counselling are all available in multiple languages.
After your first counselling session, any additional sessions will be booked directly through your counsellor. You do not need to call the Care Access Centre (CAC) to book a subsequent appointment unless you are seeking support for an unrelated issue or a new case.
Help for all mental health issues is available, including depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, addiction, self-esteem, etc.
Additional support services are also included. You can access many other WorkLife support services through EFAP. These include financial and legal support, career counselling, nutrition support and health coaching. Shepell’s website includes many additional resources, including self-directed online programs and a collection of articles.
Work/Life services are telephonic. These services are different from clinical counselling in that they are resource-based, done over the phone and delivered by professionals with designated credentials based on the area of expertise (e.g. registered dietitian for nutrition).
Feedback about EFAP services and counsellors is encouraged. When accessing services and after you have completed sessions, you will be given a paper satisfaction survey or directed to an online survey. Feedback can also be provided by contacting the Care Access Centre (CAC). This evaluation data is used by Shepell to improve services and Shepell provides summary reports back to UBC (identity of those who provided feedback is not disclosed to UBC).
For more information, including requesting brochures, booking an EFAP orientation presentation, or sharing compliments or concerns about your counselling experience with Shepell, please contact:
Health & Wellbeing Associate
By Human Resources Communications on September 21, 2015
Updated: Sept. 27, 2017
To support our faculty and staff with balancing the demands of work and family, UBC has partnered with Kids & Company to provide you with another option for child care.
These services are exclusive to employees of corporate members and the cost will depend on the service(s) you select. For example, the emergency child care package currently costs $350 for 15 visits per year per child.
Kids & Company has several locations in Metro Vancouver and surrounding areas, with plans for expansion in the coming years.
- For more information on emergency child care, please visit: https://kidsandcompany.com/corporate/back-up-program/
- For more information on full and part time child care programs, please visit: https://kidsandcompany.com/programs/full-time-part-time-programs/
UBC employees may also access additional services such as babysitter referrals, parenting concierge, Kidco Kuts (in-centre hair cut services), parenting centres and various family events.
For more information or to access services, contact Kids & Company toll-free at 1-866-695-4326 and say you’re with UBC, or register online and select either “UBC – Faculty” or “UBC – Staff” from the pull-down menu. Click here for answers to Frequently Asked Questions.
Kids & Company is just one child care option available to you. UBC Child Care Services in Vancouver and University Children’s Learning Centre in the Okanagan provide child care spaces for children of UBC students, faculty and staff. Please contact them early about available space as there may be long waiting lists.
UBC’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider, Shepell, provides family support consultations over the phone, including information on day care centres and after school programs. Click here to find out how Shepell can help you.
By Human Resources Communications on February 12, 2015
The University’s Committee for the Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) recently engaged in a competitive bid process to ensure that staff, faculty and their family members receive the best possible counselling and wellness services and value.
After careful evaluation and consideration, we are pleased to announce that effective April 1, 2015, Morneau Shepell will be UBC’s designated EFAP provider. Morneau Shepell was selected for the following reasons:
- Extensive experience providing EFAP services to post-secondary institutions in BC and Canada;
- Focus on providing excellent counselling services in more than 200 languages;
- More ways to access counselling services (face-to-face, video, telephone, email and instant messaging);
- Leader in mental health research and education.
Morneau Shepell replaces Homewood Health, who has been providing EFAP services to UBC since 2008. As we transition from Homewood Health to Morneau Shepell, there will be no disruption of EFAP services.
Until April 1st, it will be business as usual with Homewood Health. Those who are currently in counselling at the time of the transition will be able to complete counselling with Homewood Health and your counsellor will advise you of the details.
UBC’s Health Wellbeing and Benefits Team will email all employees enrolled in the EFAP more information in March. Stay tuned.
Stephanie Mah, Benefits Specialist
Tel: (604) 822-6823
Tracey Hawthorn, WRAP Coordinator
Tel: (250) 827-8183
The EFAP Committee is comprised of representatives from both Vancouver and the Okanagan, as well as representatives from UBC’s various staff and faculty unions and associations.
If you wish to change the email address at which you receive communications from UBC Benefits, visit http://www.hr.ubc.ca/update-your-email/ for instructions.