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EAP Stats and Research 2010-2011


Ames, G. M., & Bennett, J. B. (2011). Prevention interventions of alcohol problems in the workplace: A review and guiding framework. Alcohol Research & Health, 34(2), 175-187. Retrieved from

“Researchers have implemented and evaluated a variety of workplace alcohol problem prevention efforts in recent years, including programs focused on health promotion, social health promotion, brief interventions, and changing the work environment. Although some studies reported significant reductions in alcohol use outcomes, additional research with a stronger and integrated methodological approach is needed. The field of workplace alcohol prevention also might benefit from a guiding framework, such as the one proposed in this article” (cited from abstract).

Attridge, M., & Burke, J. (2011). Trends in EAP services and strategies: An industry survey. EASNA Research Notes, 2(3), 1-9. Retrieved from

"This study surveyed senior level professionals active in the EAP industry to explore trends in the use, importance, business value, and perceived viability of key kinds of services. The potential for providing more strategic consulting by EAPs at the organizational level was also examined" (p. 1).

Cartwright, S., & Cooper, C. (2011). Innovations in stress and health. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Available from

“The costs of stress and ill health to society are enormous. In recent years, there has been an increasing focus on workplace initiatives to reduce stress and improve individual resilience. This volume brings chief medical officers, leading health professionals and academics to present their views on innovations in the field of stress and health” (cited from book jacket).

Csiernik, R. (2011). The glass is filling: An examination of employee assistance program evaluations in the first decade of the new millennium. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 26(4), 334-355. Retrieved from

“Five electronic databases were searched using the key words Employee Assistance, research, and evaluation for articles published from 2000 to 2009 along with a manual search of the two prominent journals in the Employee Assistance field … Evaluations were conducted upon programs delivered across the entire helping continuum … A broad range of methodologies were employed that demonstrated in general that the Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) that were reviewed produced positive outcomes including saving organizations money as well as in producing positive change in those who sought counseling through their auspices. However, as well as describing new initiatives, program evolution, and offering insights into how specific programs could be further enhanced, broader themes were also examined such as who is and is not availing themselves of EAP services and the stigma that some still feel in seeking help through EAPs” (cited from abstract).

Farzanfar, R., Locke, S., Heeren, T., Stevens, A., Vachon, L. Nguyen, M., & Friedman, R. (2011). Workplace telecommunications technology to identify mental health disorders and facilitate self-help or professional referrals. American Journal of Health Promotion, 25(3), 207-216. Retrieved from

The purpose of this study was to “test the feasibility and impact of an automated workplace mental health assessment and intervention … Efficacy was evaluated in a randomized control trial comparing employees who received screening and intervention with those who received only screening …The intervention group showed a significant improvement in depression (p = .05) at 3 months and on two Work Limitation Questionnaire subscales, the Mental-Interpersonal Scale (p = .05) and the Time and Scheduling Scale (p = .05), at 3 and 6 months respectively with a suggestive improvement in mental health at 6 months (p = .10) …This is a potentially fruitful area for research with important implications for workplace behavioral interventions” (cited from abstract).

Herlihy, P. A. (2011). SBIRT reopens an EAP debate: Companies take different approaches to employee screening for alcohol problems. Addiction Professional, 9(2), 12-17. Retrieved from

“This article will recall some history as it relates to the current questions regarding SBIRTs introduction. Two corporate cases will be presented to illustrate how some companies have chosen slightly different paths toward the same goal. Finally, closing thoughts will be offered for consideration to assist in the decision making process regarding usage of SBIRT protocol” (cited from abstract).

Horton-Deutsch, S., McNelis, A., & O'Haver Day, P. (2011). Enhancing mutual accountability to promote quality, safety, and nurses' recovery from substance use disorders. Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, 25(6), 445-455. Retrieved from

“The aim of this study was to explore nurses' experiences in an alternative-to-discipline treatment program, the Indiana State Nurses Assistance Program (ISNAP), administered by the Indiana State Nurses Association. Qualitative methods are well suited for analyzing the range of a patient's view of experience, and they contribute to a greater understanding of how group support programs and policies contribute to or hinder the promotion of recovery and reintegration into the workforce …The findings support the need for further education and research on how to best promote and sustain recovery.” (cited from abstract).

Hymel, P., Loeppke, R., Baase, C., Burton, W., Hartenbaum, N., Hudson, T., … Larson, P. (2011). Workplace health protection and promotion: A new pathway for a healthier—and safer—workforce. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, 53(6), 695-702. Retrieved from

“Workplace health protection and promotion enhances the overall well-being of a workforce by more closely integrating health promotion and health protection activities along a continuum. In this model, health promotion interventions contribute dynamically to improved personal safety in addition to enhancing personal health, while occupational safety interventions contribute dynamically to improved personal health in addition to enhancing personal safety” (p. 695).

Jacobson, J. M., Jones, A. L., & Bowers, N. (2011). Using existing employee assistance program case files to demonstrate outcomes. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 26(1), 44-58. Retrieved from

“This study reports findings from an exploratory study of Employee Assistance Program (EAP) outcomes using existing EAP case files from 20 different U.S. employers. Research questions examined the effects of EAP services as measured by three commonly used indices: the Level of Functioning Scales at Home and at Work, and the Global Assessment of Functioning. Significant changes in scores on all three measures were found at posttest, suggesting an overall positive affect from employee participation in EAP services” (cited from abstract).

Lam, R., Lutz, K., Preece, M., Cayley, P., & Walker, A. (2011). Telephone-administered cognitive-behavioral therapy for clients with depressive symptoms in an employee assistance program: A pilot study. Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, 23(1), 11-16. Retrieved from

The purpose of this study was “to assess the clinical and work productivity effects of a brief intervention using telephone-administered cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for clients with depressive symptoms attending an employee assistance program (EAP) … Self-referred clients attending the PPC Canada EAP with clinically relevant depressive symptoms at initial assessment were offered an 8-session telephone-administered CBT program … The results of this pilot study, although limited by the absence of a comparison or control group, suggest that a brief telephone-administered CBT program can improve depressive symptomatology, work productivity, and general function in depressed clients attending an EAP” (cited from abstract).

Maltzman, S. (2011). An organizational self-care model: Practical suggestions for development and implementation. The Counseling Psychologist, 39(2), 303-319. Retrieved from

“This article describes a qualitative practice experience related to the implementation of a self-care model within a large social services organization. The goal is to stimulate further research in refining theory and interventions from a scientist-practitioner perspective” (cited from abstract).

Merrick, E., Hodgkin, D., Hiatt, D., Horgan, C. M., Greenfield, S. F., & McCann, B. (2011). Integrated employee assistance program/managed behavioral health plan utilization by persons with substance use disorders. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 40(3), 299-306. Retrieved from

“This study investigated service utilization by persons with a primary substance use disorder (SUD) diagnosis in a managed behavioral health care (MBHC) organization’s integrated EAP/MBHC product (N = 1,158). In 2004, 25.0% of clients used the EAP first for new treatment episodes. After initial EAP utilization, 44.4% received no additional formal services through the plan, and 40.4% received regular outpatient services … Findings suggest that for service users with primary SUD diagnoses in an integrated EAP/MBHC product, the EAP benefit plays a key role at the front end of treatment and is often only one component of treatment episodes” (cited from abstract).

Merrick, E. L., Hodgkin, D., Hiatt, D., Horgan, C. M., & McCann, B. (2011). EAP service use in a managed behavioral health care organization: From the employee perspective. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 26(2), 85-96. Retrieved from

“The authors surveyed a random sample of EAP service users from a national provider (361 respondents). About one third of respondents reported getting help for workplace issues. Most learned about the EAP through employer communications such as the company Web site. The large majority reported that the EAP helped them 'a lot' or 'some,' suggesting they valued this benefit” (cited from abstract).

Merrill, R., Aldana, S., Pope, J., Anderson, D., Coberley, C., Carter, R. … Whitmer, W. (2011). Evaluation of a best-practice worksite wellness program in a small-employer setting using selected well-being indices. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, 53(4), 448-454. Retrieved from

This article measures “the effectiveness of a wellness program in a small company using four well-being indicators designed to measure dimensions of physical health, emotional health, healthy behavior, and basic access to health-related conditions and services … Indicator scores were obtained and compared between Lincoln Industries employees and workers in the neighboring Lincoln/Omaha community during 2009 … Physical health, mental health, and healthy behavior were significantly greater for Lincoln Industries employees …Well-being index scores provide evidence for the effectiveness of the wellness program in this small company setting with respect to better dimensions of physical health, emotional health, and healthy behavior than geographically similar workers” (cited from abstract).

Merrill, R., Aldana, S., Vyhlidal, T. P., Howe, G., Anderson, D. R., & Whitmer, R. (2011). The impact of worksite wellness in a small business setting. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 53(2), 127-131. Retrieved from

“This study evaluates the level of participation and effectiveness of a worksite wellness program in a small business setting …This small business was able to improve the health of the entire workforce population by integrating wellness deeply into their culture and operations” (cited from abstract).

Pompe, J. (2011). The state of global EAP: A purchaser’s perspective. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 26(1), 10-24. Retrieved from

“In EAP professional journals, at conferences and via the Internet, considerable debate is waged on a variety of EAP-related topics. In most cases these debates are carried out by EAP vendors, academics or consultants, all of whom are attempting to predict or translate the needs of their customers. In some cases, the discussion occurs with minimal input from the purchasers or end users of EA services. This article represents the voice of an EAP purchaser and includes feedback from a group of multinational EA program managers” (cited from abstract).

Prottas, D., Diamante, T., & Sandys, J. (2011). The U.S. domestic workforce use of employee assistance support services: An analysis of ten years of calls. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 26(4), 296-312. Retrieved from

“Archival data from 1999 to 2010 (excluding 2001) related to 90,000 cases presented to an external Employee Assistance Program provider were analyzed with respect to frequency of presenting problems. The authors examined differences in frequencies across gender, sector, and relationship of client with sponsoring organization. Significant differences were found between women and men … It is argued that given the noteworthy sample size and longitudinal nature of the data archive, commensurate value of the employee assistance service can be inferred.” (cited from abstract).

Sanders, M., Stallman, H., & McHale, M. (2011). Workplace Triple P: A controlled evaluation of a parenting intervention for working parents. Journal of Family Psychology, 25(4), 581-590. Retrieved from

“This paper examined the effects of a parenting intervention targeting working parents called Workplace Triple P. The intervention targeted both parenting and work factors, focusing on key transition times (e.g., from home to work) and trained parents to more effectively manage these transitions … Results showed that parents who had received the intervention reported significantly lower levels on measures of personal distress and dysfunctional parenting; and higher levels of work commitment, work satisfaction, and self-efficacy. Implications for the delivery of parenting interventions as employee assistance programs are discussed along with how such interventions can enhance work and family life” (cited from abstract).

Silberman, J., Schwartz, S., Giuseffi, D., Wang, C., Nevedal, D., & Bedrosian, R. (2011). Reductions in employee productivity impairment observed after implementation of web-based worksite health promotion programs. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, 53(12), 1404-1412. Retrieved from

This study assessed “changes in employee productivity impairment observed after the implementation of several Web-based health promotion programs … Health risk assessments and self-report measures of productivity impairment were administered on-line to more than 43,000 participants of Web-based health promotion programs … Reductions in productivity impairment were observed after 1 month of program utilization. Productivity impairment at 90- and 180-day follow-ups also decreased relative to baseline. Improvements in employee health were associated with reductions in employee productivity impairment” (cited from abstract).

Skipper, G., & Dupont, R. (2011). The Physician Health Program: A replicable model of sustained recovery management. In J.F. Kelly and W.L. White (Eds.), Addiction Recovery Management: Theory, Research, and Practice, Current Clinical Psychiatry (pp. 281-299). Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Retrieved from

“Physician Health Programs (PHPs) in the USA have evolved over the past 3 decades as models of recovery management. They encourage early referral, sophisticated evaluation, and active long-term monitoring and care management of troubled physicians, especially those with substance-related disorders … PHPs have proven successful with reports of 5-year abstinence rates of 79%, return to work rates of 96%, and virtually no evidence of risk or harm to patients from participating physicians. Can the principles used by PHPs be transferred for use by other patients? … Many elements of PHP care management can be transferred, in whole or in part, to others offering the promise of substantial improvements in long-term outcomes” (cited from abstract).

Spetch, A., Howland, A., & Lowman, R. (2011). EAP utilization patterns and employee absenteeism: Results of an empirical, 3-year longitudinal study in a national Canadian retail corporation. Consulting Psychology Journal: Practice and Research, 63(2), 110-128. Retrieved from

“This study made use of a unique longitudinal archival data set to examine EAP utilization, the problems for which help was sought, and the relationship of EAP utilization to absenteeism over 3 consecutive years among all EAP-eligible (N = 3,448) employees in all locations of a large national Canadian retail store … Most frequently, the reasons for help seeking were personal issues, marital/family problems, and (a distant third) work-related issues … The results showed that EAP users generally had higher rates of absenteeism than nonusers during the year in which EAP was used but (with some exceptions) did not differ from the non-EAP user groups in the year(s) before and after treatment” (cited from abstract).

Wang, J., Patten, S., Currie, S., Sareen, J., & Schmitz, N. (2011). Perceived needs for and use of workplace accommodations by individuals with a depressive and/or anxiety disorder. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 53(11), 1268-1272. Retrieved from

“Objective: To estimate the percentages of need for and use of workplace mental health accommodations, and to identify factors related to the use of accommodations … Methods: Participants with a mental disorder, identified from the community, were questioned about need for and use of workplace accommodations (n = 784) … Eighty-three percent needed accommodations; only 30.5% had received accommodations. Having received accommodations was not related to demographic or socioeconomic factors. Participants with a 12-month disorder were less likely to have received accommodations than others … A significant proportion of workers with a mental disorder and need for accommodations have not received accommodations at their workplaces. The accommodations needed by this population are not expensive and can potentially be provided by modifying management practices” (cited from abstract).

Zhun, G., Wang, Y., & Zhang, K. (2011). Organization-level stress interventions: EAP perspective. Business Management and Electronic Information, 1, 502-505. Retrieved from

“The occupational health area is developing models with a variety of methods to address and prevent job stress at the organization-level. A review of literature on employee assistance program (EAP) was conducted to explore relevant methods from its perspective. Result reveals that EAP is a potential good partner in the efforts to prevent Job stress at organization-level” (cited from abstract).


Attridge, M. Vol. 40 no.4 - 4th Quarter 2010. 20 Years of EAP Cost Research: Taking the Productivity Path to ROI. Journal of Employee Assistance. Retrieved from

The author recommends an alternative strategy to produce a significant cost-offset for EAPs, one that is based on self-report measures of employee work productivity and work absence days for EAP clients.

Attridge, M. Vol. 40 no.3 - 3rd Quarter 2010. Taking the Pareto Path to ROI. Journal of Employee Assistance. Retrieved from

Some studies have shown that EAPs have a positive financial impact that offsets their cost, but few of these studies have been published in peer-reviewed journals. In this article, the author reflects on the progress of the field in the 20 years since that study and describes the current state of outcomes and cost-offset research on EAP services.

Attridge, M. Vol. 40 no.2 - 2nd Quarter 2010. EAP Cost-Benefit Research: 20 Years after McDonnell Douglas. Journal of Employee Assistance. Retrieved from

It has been two decades since the seminal study of the financial costs and benefits of the employee assistance program at the McDonnell Douglas Corporation (Smith and Mahoney 1989, 1990). This study is credited with significantly advancing the business case for the field of employee assistance. Although it is considered a classic research work in the field, the study was not published in a scientific journal and therefore did not undergo a critical peer review. In this article, the author revisits the methodology and major findings of the McDonnell Douglas study and raises some critical questions about it.

Attridge, M. (2010). Resources for employers interested in employee assistance programs: A summary of EASNA's purchaser's guide and research notes. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(1), 34-45. Retrieved from

"This article identifies five employer guides for EAP and other guides for related topics of behavioral health, mental health, and substance abuse and misuse. An in-depth summary is provided of the 2009 report from the Employee Assistance Society of North America (EASNA), called Selecting and Strengthening Employee Assistance Programs: A Purchaser's Guide. Also summarized are the first 10 issues of the new series of brief reports from EASNA called Research Notes." (cited from abstract).

Attridge, M., & VandePol, B. (2010). The business case for workplace critical incident response: A literature review and some employer examples. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(2), 132-145. Retrieved from

"A literature review assessing the potential business value of employers providing critical incident response (CIR) services. Findings include that CIR services lead to financial savings and increased rates of employees returning to work after a critical incident. One study of occupational physician specialty care found significant cost savings in workers’ compensation cases over a 10-year period when using a psychological approach to treatment (Bernacki & Tsai, 2003) Frequency of lost-time claims decreased over the 10 years by 73%, the rate of medical claims decreased 61%; the number of days paid per claim decreased 77%, and total workers compensation expenses including all medical, indemnity and administrative, decreased 54%” (p. 137). Overall, however, the financial business case evidence for supporting CIR services, however, is not as strong as the evidence for its therapeutic value." (p. 140).

Baicker, K., Cutler, D., & Song, Z. (2010). Workplace wellness programs can generate savings. Health Affairs (Project Hope), 29(2), 304-311. Retrieved from

"Amid soaring health spending, there is growing interest in workplace disease prevention and wellness programs to improve health and lower costs. In a critical meta-analysis of the literature on costs and savings associated with such programs, we found that medical costs fall by about $3.27 for every dollar spent on wellness programs and that absenteeism costs fall by about $2.73 for every dollar spent. This return on investment suggests that the wider adoption of such programs could prove beneficial for budgets and productivity as well as health outcomes." (cited from abstract).

Benavides, A., & David, H. (2010). Local government wellness programs: A viable option to decrease healthcare costs and improve productivity. Public Personnel Management, 39(4), 291. Retrieved from

"The article reviews the research on Employee Assistance Programs and differentiates between them and the current Wellness programs that are in place today. Wellness programs have proved to be cost effective and the return on investment has been well worth the initial cost. A recent study is reviewed to show the current profile of Wellness programs in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. More local governments in this area have initiated Wellness programs and the results so far have been encouraging." (cited from abstract).

Csiernik, R., & Darnell, K. (2010). Perceptions of affiliate EAP counselors: An exploratory study. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(2), 154-168. Retrieved from

"exploratory study of Canadian Employee Assistance Program (EAP) affiliates from Saskatchewan and Ontario was undertaken employing one focus group of four persons, and the completion of 12 open-ended questionnaires. Study participants in general enjoyed their work with this population, particularly the diversity of issues with which clients presented and felt that providing counselling to this group was critical. However, they also highlighted several grave issues they faced in fulfilling their responsibilities as EAP affiliates. The primary clinical and ethical concern was the inability to provide sufficient counselling hours to clients in need due to continuous pressure to spend less time with clients from their employers, along with a constant need to ask permission from less seasoned clinical directors for extra counselling sessions. There was a feeling among some of dishonesty between what organizations were told their employees would receive regarding clinical services and what affiliates were allowed to provide." (cited from abstract).

Grossman, R. J. (2010). What to do about substance abuse (cover story). HRMagazine, 55(11), 32. Retrieved from

"The article discusses ways in which U.S. employers address the problem of substance abuse by employees. Most business leaders provide Employee Assistance Programs (EAP). Reasons behind the continuing incidence of substance abuse in the workforce include avoiding unwanted publicity and employers' confusion about their responsibilities under the Americans With Disabilities Act” (cited from abstract). However, according to metrics from the national EAP Data Warehouse, EAPs receive on average 1.6 employee alcohol referrals and 0.5 drug referrals per 1,000 employees each year. If you assume conservatively that EAPs are available to about 80 percent of the 14 million employees in need of treatment, that means EAPs are reaching only 0.02 percent of these workers." (cover page). The article goes on to explore why EAPs are failing to effectively handle substance abuse.

Hamilton, J. (2010). Effects of an employee wellness program on physiological risk factors, job satisfaction, and monetary savings in a South Texas university. Dissertation Abstracts International, 71. Retrieved from

"An experimental study was conducted to investigate the effects of an Employee Wellness Program on physiological risk factors, job satisfaction, and monetary savings in a South Texas University. The non-probability sample consisted of 31 employees from lower income level positions. The employees were randomly assigned to the treatment group which participated in a 12-week intervention employee wellness program consisting of regular exercise, educational sessions, and a session with a personal training, or the non-participating comparison group. The physiological factor of flexibility showed a statistically significant change, favoring the experimental group. Analysis of effect sizes showed that the intervention did have a positive effect on most variables in physiological risk factors, job satisfaction, monetary spending on medical expenses, and absenteeism, all favoring the experimental group." (cited from abstract).

Jacobson, J. M., & Attridge, M. (2010, August). Employee assistance programs (EAPs): An allied profession for work/life. In S. Sweet & J. Casey (Eds.), Work and family encyclopedia. Chestnut Hill, MA: Sloan Work and Family Research Network. Retrieved from

"This entry examines the major theories, policies, and best practices related to designing and administering an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). An emphasis is placed on the dual roles of EAP to support both individual employees and also the employer work organizations." (p. 1).

Jacobson, J. M., & Jones, A. L. (2010). Standards for the EAP profession: Isn't it time we all start speaking the same language? Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(1), 1-18. Retrieved from

"This article reports findings from an online survey focused on EAP outcomes from 23 EAP owners, who cover 1,500 work organizations and more than 900,000 employees. Results suggest work-related stress and cost of health care are of paramount concern to EAPs and their customers, and standardized outcomes and reporting formulas would be welcomed." (cited from abstract).

Keay, E. E., Macdonald, S. S., Durand, P. P., Csiernik, R. R., & Wild, T. C. (2010). Reasons for adopting and not adopting: Employee assistance and drug testing programs in Canada. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(1), 65-71. Retrieved from

"Canadian employers with 100 or more employees were surveyed about their Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and drug testing program (DTP) implementation. The results indicate that EAP adoption relates to employee well-being, increased employee morale, increasing productivity, and reducing absenteeism. EAPs were not adopted to conform to industry expectations or due to a negotiated contract with the union. Implementing a DTP was to reduce work accidents and to deter drug use. Not implementing a DTP was based upon the perception that there was no need, presumably due to low workplace prevalence of drug use and or job accidents." (cited from abstract).

McCann, B., Azzone, V., Merrick, E. L., Hiatt, D., Hodgkin, D., & Horgan, C. M. (2010). Employer choices in employee assistance program design and worksite services. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(2), 89-106. Retrieved from

"In today's complex private health care market, employers have varied preferences for particular features of behavioral health products such as Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs). Factors that may influence these preferences include establishment size, type of organization, industry, workplace substance abuse regulations, and structure of health insurance benefits. This study of 103 large employer purchasers from a single managed behavioral health care organization investigated the impact of such variables on the EAP features that employers select to provide to workers and their families. Findings indicate that for this group of employers, preferences for the type, and delivery mode of EAP counseling services are fairly universal, whereas number of sessions provided and choices for EAP-provided worksite activities are much more varied and may be more reflective of the diverse characteristics, organizational missions, and workplace culture found among larger employers in the United States." (cited from abstract).

McLeod, J. (2010). The effectiveness of workplace counselling: A systematic review. Counselling & Psychotherapy Research, 10(4), 238-248. Retrieved from

"This paper presents a comprehensive, systematic review of the effectiveness of workplace counselling. Findings are analysed in terms of client satisfaction, psychological functioning, the meaning of work, work behaviour, and negative outcomes. Taken as a whole, the results of research suggest that counselling is generally effective in alleviating psychological problems, has a significant impact on sickness absence, and has a moderate effect on attitudes to work." (cited from abstract).

McPherson, T., Goperlud, E., Derr, D., Mickenberg, J., & Courtemanche, S. (2010). Telephonic screening and brief intervention for alcohol misuse among workers contacting the employee assistance program: A feasibility study. Drug and Alcohol Review, 29(6), pp. 641-646. Retrieved from

"Substantial empirical support exists for alcohol screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) in medical, but not non-medical settings such as the workplace. The goal of the study is to examine the feasibility of implementing routine telephonic alcohol SBIRT in an EAP call centre and assess whether routine SBIRT results in increased identification of workers who misuse alcohol. An alcohol SBIRT program developed based on World Health Organization recommendations was implemented in one EAP call centre serving one large employer. Workers were offered screening using the Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test (AUDIT) during intake, brief counselling using motivational interviewing, referral to counselling, and follow-up. Results. At 5 months, 93% of workers contacting the EAP completed the AUDIT-C: 40% prescreened positive and 52% went on to screen at moderate or high risk for an alcohol problem. Overall identification rate (18%) approached general US population estimates. Most agreed to follow-up and three-quarters set an appointment for face-to-face counseling." (cited from abstract).

Osilla, K., de la Cruz, E., Miles, J., Zellmer, S., Watkins, K., Larimer, M., & Marlatt, G. (2010). Exploring productivity outcomes from a brief intervention for at-risk drinking in an employee assistance program. Addictive Behaviors, 35(3), 194-200. Retrieved from

"Brief intervention (BI) research has traditionally examined alcohol and drug use outcomes; however it is unknown whether BIs can also impact on-the-job productivity. This exploratory study examines changes in workplace productivity and related costs for clients receiving a BI for at-risk drinking in the employee assistance program (EAP). Participants were 44 clients attending the EAP for behavioral health concerns, screened for at-risk drinking, assigned to BI+Usual Care (n=25) or UC alone (n=19), and who completed 3-month follow-up … The estimated cost savings from improved productivity for the BI+UC group was $1200 per client over the UC group." (cited from abstract).

Pollack, K. M., Austin, W., & Grisso, J. (2010). Employee assistance programs: A workplace resource to address intimate partner violence. Journal of Women's Health (15409996), 19(4), 729-733. Retrieved from

"A literature review of how EAPS address Intimate Partner Violence, concluding that EAPS need to be more effective in preventing domestic violence, and that more research on this subject is necessary. Results from the two intervention studies revealed close connections between EAP clients being treated for alcoholism and IPV perpetration and the effectiveness of a standardized tool to identify EAP clients experiencing IPV." (cited from abstract).

Pollack, K., McKay, T., Cumminskey, C., Clinton-Sherrod, A., Lindquist, C., Lasater, B., & ... Grisso, J. (2010). Employee assistance program services for intimate partner violence and client satisfaction with these services. Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine, 52(8), 819-826. Retrieved from

"A mixed-methods study consisting of semistructured telephone interviews with 28 EAPs about IPV-related services and a national web-based survey of 1765 women regarding their interactions with EAPs when seeking IPV-related assistance, EAPs provide fairly extensive services to individuals experiencing IPV. Satisfaction with EAP services for IPV was significantly associated with annual income and the type of help received from the EAP, but not with type of IPV experienced. EAP representatives described challenges with accurately identifying IPV victims and women expressed concerns with confidentiality." (cited from abstract).

Sieck, C. J., & Heirich, M. (2010). Focusing attention on substance abuse in the workplace: A comparison of three workplace interventions. Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 25(1), 72-87. Retrieved from

"This research examined aspects of adult work life that influence alcohol risk perception (ARP) and consumption in three different worksite interventions. Health-attitude survey and self-reported alcohol consumption data were compared across three worksites included in a common funding initiative. Among at-risk drinkers, two studies showed decreases in alcohol consumption in the intervention groups, although the numbers in each group were small. These changes were seen with no change in ARP, which was quite high at baseline. Findings across worksites suggest that worksite characteristics influence drinking norms and behavior. ARP appeared to be an influencing factor only when interventions helped focus attention on the personal significance of risky behaviors. Interventions that focus on health promotion show high participation as well as greater improvement in drinking risk than those focusing on punitive sanctions."(cited from abstract).

Smith, Chris. Selling an Employee Assistance Program — How to Build a Successful Business Case. Agent’s Sales Journal.
5/5/2010. Retrieved from

"As businesses search for opportunities to trim their budgets, employee benefits will typically be the first to feel the ax, from wellness initiatives to EAPs. In this economic climate, everything needs a solid business case, and making that case can be crucial to closing the deal. Sometimes, to get the right answer, you have to reframe the question and the beliefs that companies have about EAPs." Health Reform Prompts Employers to Invest in EAPs. December 15, 2010. Retrieved from

A recent survey of 282 employers by Watson Wyatt and the National Business Group on health found that 72% were enhancing onsite programs aimed at stress management, EAPs or health coaching; or plan to do so in the next 12 months.

Weiss, R. M. (2010). Brinksmanship redux: Employee assistance programs' precursors and prospects. Employee Responsibilities & Rights Journal, 22(4), 325-343. Retrieved from

"Attempting to change their image as instruments of coercion, EAPs added a variety of social work functions to their portfolios but, now primarily operating as external contractors, have seen cash flows fall dramatically in the face of intense competition from similar services. EAP practitioners have called for restoring the approach promoted by academics supported by Smithers, who aggressively maintain that eliminating behavioral health problems is the responsibility of employees rather than employers. This article compares the evidence addressing the efficacy of that approach with that of alternatives, being developed outside of the U.S., that expand employee rights." (cited from abstract).

Williams, Walt. Mental Illness Major Cause of Sick Leave.
The State Journal. September 23, 2010. Retrieved from

A recent study by the Canadian Centre for Addiction and Mental Health concluded mental illness resulted in more sick days than any other chronic illness, costing the country's economy $51 billion annually in lost productivity.

Yen, L., Schultz, A., Schaefer, C., Bloomberg, S., & Edington, D. (2010). Long-term return on investment of an employee health enhancement program at a Midwest utility company from 1999 to 2007. International Journal of Workplace Health Management, 3(2), pp. 79-96. Retrieved from

"The purpose of this paper is to document the total return on investment (ROI) of a comprehensive worksite health program from 1999 to 2007 through two different analytic approaches. Two analytical techniques were used: time period analysis and historical trend analysis of the entire study period. The ROI from health care costs and time away from work ranged from 1.29 to 2.07 for the four time periods with a cumulative ROI of 1.66 over nine years. The historical trend analysis of 2,753 long-term employees resulted in a 1.57 ROI for 2,036 program participants (t-test: p<0.005) with statistically significant annual saving of $180 per participant per year." (cited from abstract).

Zullo, R., Herlihy, P., Heirich, M., (2010). A Longitudinal Lens on the Evolution of EAP, Work-life and Wellness Benefit Programs. World at Work Journal, Third Quarter 2010. Retrieved from
A Longitudinal Lens on the Evolution of EAP, Work-life and Wellness Benefit Programs

"How have employee assistance (EAP), work-life and wellness programs changed in the businesses that were recognized as "family friendly" 15 years earlier? Harsh economic conditions have threatened discretionary benefits that positively affect talent recruitment, retention, employee productivity and corporate image over this very same time period (Smyth et al. 2009). Thus, the authors investigated these changes in three progressive benefits programs in light of the economic and sociological changes that had occurred in the interim." (cited from abstract).

2000 - 2009 EAP Statistics and Research

2012 EAP Statistics and Research

2013 - present EAP Statistics and Research






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