Archdiocese offers counseling benefits to employees

The Archdiocese of Baltimore has begun offering a new benefit for employees and their dependents that will provide help addressing personal issues like problems with relationships, stress, anxiety, depression and substance abuse.

Launched on Nov. 1, the “Employee Assistance Program” (EAP) is run through ComPsych Guidance Resources and provides no-cost confidential assistance. EAP is staffed by clinicians available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The plan covers up to five visits at no cost, as well as resources and referrals for legal, financial and “work-life” needs such as child care, elder care and planning for college.

Petra R. Phelps, archdiocesan director of employee benefits, said there are approximately 5,350 archdiocesan employees in EAP. While the archdiocese has some early utilization reports for the last quarter of 2006, Ms. Phelps declined to release the numbers, “since the program was introduced during the middle of the quarter.”

“This is a fairly common benefit to offer employees, both in the profit and non-profit segment,” she said.

Ms. Phelps noted that Catholic Charities uses a separate EAP for its employees.

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.