No one should ever have to suffer in silence if they need mental health support and counseling – which is why offering substantial access to care, and treatment options is so important. Forty-one million Americans with employer-provided coverage received mental health support in 2020, and employers have taken notice, recognizing that mental health services are of paramount importance to the modern workforce and the health of employees and their families.
Employer-provided coverage plays a critical role in reducing both stigma and barriers to access – especially financial barriers. Marni S., the President and CEO of the Mental Health Association of Central Florida, recently discussed how employer-provided coverage significantly reduces the cost of both mental health services and related prescription drugs: “We should not be ashamed of seeking treatment or support to maintain our well-being. These resources are already available to many of us, especially employees and their families. We should feel empowered to utilize these benefits and mental health resources – that is why they are there!”
Jessica F., a mental health services provider in a leadership role at a Pennsylvania employer echoed similar sentiments: “Because we have these employer-provided benefits available, we talk about it a lot. What we want to create is a culture inside our organization where we care for our workforce with the same level of intentionality as we care for the people that we serve in the community.”
Beyond providing the coverage that enables access to mental health services, employers across the country have stepped up to encourage the use of the services their health plans deliver. Karen W., an employer in Minnesota, highlighted in a short video more about the mental health care that her company has encouraged employees to access during particularly stressful moments in life.
Coverage@Work’s recent survey of consumers attitudes uncovered significant recognition of the role that employer-provided coverage plays in delivering access to mental health care — particularly for children, with most parents (56%) believing that their children’s need for mental health services is being met by their employer-provided plans.
Building the workforce of the future requires early education on the value of mental health services. Scott H., a community college leader in Alabama, stressed the importance of coverage in a post-pandemic world: “Some of our younger kids and people that will eventually be part of the workforce have dealt with a lot, that maybe older generations haven’t had to deal with. So mental health is a priority for me.”
Everyone deserves access to effective, affordable, and equitable mental health support and counseling. To learn more about services provided by employer-provided coverage, click here.