Ensuring Effective Treatment
The EAP’s ability to enhance the therapeutic process doesn’t end when the employee enters treatment. In fact, this is the very beginning of a lifelong dedication to sobriety and mental health. Once the client/patient has entered treatment, you, as an EAP, can be as involved as you want or are allowed to be. Typically, patients and clients are more than willing to share their progress with their EAP, but of course there are times where privacy regulations limit that.
How Can EAPs ensure the Best Treatment for Their Employees?
- Expect regular communication from the treatment center when possible. Privacy laws may not allow for full disclosure from the treatment center, but when stakeholders are intimately involved in the person’s treatment, it is typically more effective.
- Encourage the family to not only be supportive, but actively engage in treatment. It may take some time for the family to understand their role in their loved one’s addiction. Or the family may be hostile to the treatment process and does not want to believe that they may be contributory to their loved ones’ problems. Further, they may not believe that there’s anything they can do. EAPs have an opportunity, alongside the treatment center, to discuss this with the family and encourage them to contribute.
- Ensure that the breadth of co-occurring disorders is being treated. If more than one disease or condition, such as addiction and mental health issues, is present, it is important that these conditions are all being treated effectively and comprehensively. This begins with choosing a treatment center that has a comprehensive dual diagnosis program, but also requires an assurance that they are receiving the appropriate care and responding well. Not all treatment centers are perfectly suited to the client, despite their best efforts, so encouraging a referral when progress is important.
- Ensure that sufficient time is being spent in treatment. Follow the levels of care. While many insurance companies will try to minimize the amount of time in treatment, it is been proven that better outcomes are typically correlated with longer, appropriate care. If possible, treatment should last a minimum of 90 days and work through the various levels of care. After discharge from primary treatment, outpatient treatment and transitional care is appropriate for many clients/patients as well.
- Develop a post-treatment plan to ensure employees are following their discharge plan. This is especially critical in the first 30-90 days of treatment n which are often the hardest to come to terms with. In the first few months after treatment, may seem impossible to stay off drugs or to remain on medication. It feels daunting and superhuman. However, with the right support, this initial hump can be surmounted and maintaining sobriety and mental health becomes more manageable thereafter.
We hope that you, as an employee assistance professional do not underestimate the power of your counsel and support when it comes to complex and chronic addiction and mental health issues. During these very difficult times, clients/patient need as much support as they can get. The lucky ones will have families and friends that support them unconditionally throughout the process and well into their aftercare. Others will have difficulty recruiting the support team they need to ensure long-term sobriety. You can add a different dynamic as a trusted authority figure, that can help the employee immeasurably. Call Us for More Information 877-772-1930