Have you seen the clues? Take a look at how your employees are performing at work. Are they really focused on their job? Do they seem anxious? As a business owner, you are likely not an expert in mental health management, but you are working hard to be an expert at making your business successful. You may be missing the signs that your employees are under stress and how that stress is impacting your business.
As a small business owner, you may not have an HR team or a full-time benefits professional helping to manage your workforce. In larger businesses, HR and benefits professionals use the annual Sanofi Canada healthcare survey as an educational and practical tool to gain insights on employee health and how health benefits help employees. Here are some findings on employee stress from 2020’s survey that you need to know.
- An employee’s age is a key factor in how they manage stress
If your team is made of up 20- and 30-somethings, the Sanofi survey found that over one-third of your workforce are more likely experiencing higher levels of stress than an older workgroup would. That means you likely have employees taking sick days, arriving late or leaving work early due to stress a few times each year.
- An employee’s physical health is a factor in unplanned absence from work caused by stress
Whether younger or older, if you have employees who are in poor physical health, it’s likely they take almost twice as much unplanned time away from work due to stress as other employees.
Running your small business takes careful planning. Unplanned employee absence caused by stress can substantially impact your productivity. So what safeguards can you put in place?
Here are some of the ways offering health insurance to employees can help support their mental health (and your business).
- Coverage for Professional / Registered Therapists
While treatment from a general practitioner will usually not cost an employee anything, expenses for other therapy (including individual, marriage and family therapy, or addiction counselling) can really add up. Visits for counselling provided by a psychologist or social worker can help an employee think about their problems differently and give them ways to manage — and usual and customary fees charged can be covered under health insurance you provide, up to a plan maximum covered per year.
Many individuals find that prescription medication decreases their suffering from stress and improves their quality of life. Treatment may continue for many years.The health insurance plan you provide can cover costs for a wide variety of prescription drugs. Employees value the coverage and ease of taking their health benefit plan card to the pharmacist, avoiding some out-of-pocket costs.
- Alternative Therapies
When it comes to improving an employee’s overall well-being in mind, body and spirit, they may consider alternative therapies. Naturopathic doctors, Swedish and shiatsu massage performed by registered therapists, and eastern-based acupuncture are just some of the options individuals choose. These services are not covered by their government health plan and the employee will be charged a fee, which may be partly covered by the health insurance you provide.Chiropractic adjustments are often sought to help release muscle tension, and chiropractors can offer relaxation techniques to help patients manage stress.Like coverage for other registered therapists, the dollar amount covered per visit and the annual combined maximum benefit will be outlined in your health insurance plan.
- Additional Plan Benefits
Health insurance also delivers many “built-in” tools that can help employees learn new ways to deal with the expected and unexpected in life:
- Mindfulness tools that help individuals connect with the moment instead of reliving past regrets or worrying about the future
- Access to virtual care for secure medical consultations with friendly, knowledgeable clinicians on their mobile smartphone or tablet by text or video chat whenever and wherever they need it
- Motivational programs to help them focus and achieve their health goals, including digital therapy
- Access to recent articles on finding care, managing their health, and preventing illness
- Easy-to-use search tools to help them find a doctor, health facility, or community support group in their area
- Provincial health resource information
- Trusted information on conditions and prescription drugs
Making health insurance available can be critical to keeping your team on task and making your business successful. Choosing your small business health insurance or understanding all its features can be stressful.
At SBIS, we can help you put in place
- lifetime renewable coverage for every type of employee aged 18 and over, no matter what their occupation is
- budget-friendly options that allow you to define how many dollars you will contribute for an employee toward an individual health insurance purchase.
We’re ready to answer your questions. Just give us a call or go online to discover the wide range of small group and individual health and dental insurance options we offer.