Chesterton Tribune


Town Council hears Franciscan Alliance pitch on Employee Assistance Program

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The Chesterton Town Council heard Franciscan Alliance pitch an employee assistance program (EAP) at its meeting Monday night.

Members took no action on the proposal, under which municipal employees and eligible members of their families would receive six free out-patient counseling sessions per year.

The idea behind the EAP is not only to retain good employees who may be experiencing stress in their lives but also to help the town’s bottom line, EAP therapist Jean Lubeckis told the council. Stressed employees are often absent ones or careless ones, who show up late on the job or do a bad job or cause accidents.

“At Franciscan Alliance EAP, we offer six sessions,” Lubeckis said. “Our statistics reveal that 80 percent of the issues are resolved. That means only 20 percent receive referrals and of those 20 percent, many are community-based referrals such as self-help groups. This results in less insurance usage.”

“Research has shown that stress costs business $300 billion a year on sickness, absenteeism, and health insurance costs,” Lubeckis noted. “Sixty to 80 percent of work accidents are related to stress and about 40 percent of job turnover is due to stress. Seventy to 90 percent of adult visits to primary care are for stress related problems. Eighty percent of all illness is stress related. And maximum absenteeism on any average work day is because of stress-related problems.”

Lubeckis added that EAP counselors are bound by the same HIPAA laws as physicians are. “No one will know your employees accessed EAP unless they are mandatory referrals and a release of information has been signed for by the manager,” she said.

Pack 929

Earlier in the meeting, Cub Scout Pack 929 led attendees in the Pledge of Allegiance.



Posted 10/11/2012