If you have ever reached out to a therapist or the community for mental health support, you may relate to the frustration that many individuals feel. The healthcare system is experiencing more demands for access to care, and the mental health industry is no different.

Here are some of the common obstacles to getting mental healthcare:

  1. Stigma: Fear of judgment can result in individuals choosing not to seek out help.
  2. Cost: Even with insurance coverage, deductibles have risen, and paying out of pocket is challenging for many people.
  3. Provider shortage: A shortage of mental health providers in many areas leads to longer wait times for appointments. As a result, individuals may give up on looking for a provider after one or more failed attempts.
  4. Time and transportation: Getting to and from appointments is often time-consuming, and many cannot afford to take time away from other personal or work responsibilities. In addition to scheduling conflicts, transportation challenges are also often a barrier to seeking help.
  5. Mistrust: Having or knowing someone who has had negative experiences with mental health providers (or healthcare in general) can lead to avoidant behavior.

The EAP as a Mental Health Resource

If you are a federal government employee or are employed by one of the millions of private employers who offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP), you are in luck. Your EAP is here to help you overcome these common obstacles by offering free, convenient, and confidential mental health support.

Magellan Federal partners with 296 federal agencies to offer a comprehensive EAP that includes short- term soluition-focused counseling services. We continuously work with our clients and providers to eliminate the barriers associated with accessing mental healthcare. We collaborate across various teams and contract agreements to provide resources and quick, reliable care. Here’s how we break down the barriers to mental healthcare.

  • Referrals are always voluntary and confidential, easing the stigma and fear of coming forward for help.
  • EAP provides free counseling sessions with no co-pay or deductible.
  • Many EAPs offer a variety of virtual counseling options, which reduce delays in appointment scheduling.
  • Employees can often schedule directly with an EAP provider at their convenience, either via the website’s online scheduling links or through a find-help function .
  • The Magellan Federal EAP call center answers calls in less than 30 seconds, eliminating the frustration of being transferred or put on hold.
  • The call center is staffed with clinical experts who remove any guesswork and connect the caller with appropriate referrals and resources.
  • The employer EAP website provides current information and provides reliable resources.
  • When requested by a manager, health and wellness presentations are readily available to promote self-awareness and self-care and introduce individuals to available services.
  • Virtual counseling sessions reduce transportation and scheduling conflicts. This modality can also decrease the stigma some people may feel if seen walking into a counselor’s office.
  • EAP services often promote coping skills, resiliency, and resource use. These skills may lessen or prevent a mental health crisis in the future.

The Magellan Federal EAP eliminates common challenges associated with accessing mental health support and continues to implement new operations that improve care. Consider using your EAP as an alternative to paying out of pocket for quality mental health services. Your well-being—and wallet—will thank you!