University of Waterloo (including Conrad Grebel University College, Renison Unviersity College, and St. Paul's University College) employees and their dependent family members have a broad range of health and wellness services under the Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP), provided by Homewood Health™.
Who is eligible?
Active employees of University of Waterloo who are eligible for the full benefits program (i.e. up to 6 x earnings life insurance, extended health, dental, sick leave, long-term disability, tuition, etc.), are eligible for EFAP services.
- For Staff and CUPE members, this is anyone who is employed in a permanent and ongoing position.
- For Faculty, this includes permanent and ongoing positions plus after 2 year definite term appointments.
In addition, an eligible employee’s spouse and/or dependent children up to the age of 21 (or 23 if full-time students, no age limit if disabled) will be eligible for the EFAP.
Who is ineligible?
Employees who have the temporary benefits program (i.e. extended health, 1 x earnings life insurance, 6 sick days per year) are not eligible for EFAP services.
Who has to know?
The EFAP services provided are private and confidential. There is no information about your use of EFAP services that can be released to anyone without your written permission. This includes other employees, your family members or any other third party.
What does it cost?
There is no cost to you. The EFAP is part of the full benefits program provided by University of Waterloo for you and your immediate family members.
How do I access counselling services?
You may access EFAP counselling services by calling the Homewood Health's Client Service Centre (1-800-663-1142). You will be offered an appointment within 2-3 business days of your initial call and can usually be seen by a counsellor within three to five days.
You may also process a secure electronic request over the web by visiting the Homewood Health website.
When are counselling appointments available?
Daytime and evening counselling hours are available on weekdays or weekends. You can request for your preference when you contact Homewood Health’s Client Service Centre (1-800-663-1142).
Where are the in person counselling sessions offered?
Your preference for appointment location will be made at the time of your call with the intake representative. Homewood Health™ has a large network of counsellors available throughout Canada. You can request for your preference when you contact Homewood Health’s Client Service Centre (1-800-663-1142).
Who is Homewood Health?
Homewood Health™ is a trusted Canadian company specializing in providing employee assistance and workplace solutions. For over 30 years, they have helped thousands of employees and family members resolve personal issues and lead healthier, happier lives. The service offers a network of licensed professionals with expertise in dealing with a wide range of personal and family problems and covers access to short term counselling for a wide range of services for employees and their dependents.
Type of counselling available:
- emotional or stress-related
- trauma/crisis counselling
- managing health problems
- life adjustment (grief, relocation, job change)
- problems at work, conflict resolution skills
- dependency on drugs or alcohol
Other support coaching/counselling available:
- childcare and eldercare resources and support
- financial consultation
- legal advice
- nutritional & health coaching & counselling
- smoking cessation program
- career planning
- pre-retirement planning
- shift worker support
How does the Employee & Family Assistance Program (EFAP) help?
EFAP provides confidential, short-term counselling to help you and your immediate family members manage and cope with your personal problems. Counsellors provide a safe, non-judgmental place for you to talk and help you to explore solutions. EFAP counselling is available anytime day or night, 365 days of the year whenever you or your family member needs the support.
How do I know when I should use the EFAP?
Consider using the EFAP when your own efforts at resolving problems are not working, you feel overwhelmed, or you want to prevent problems from becoming larger. The EFAP also offers helpful support with childcare, eldercare, financial, legal issues and other day to day challenges you may face.
Remember, the EFAP is not only there for people in crisis. Consider accessing services any time you want to improve your overall health and well-being.
How can I be assured of the quality of the service I will receive?
Homewood Health’s staff members are specially selected for their training, expertise, and experience. The assistance they offer is current, research-based, and designed to produce the best possible outcomes for you.
Can I access the EFAP through Homewood from outside of Canada?
Through Homewood Health’s partnerships, some services of the EFAP are available outside of Canada including counselling services in person and by telephone. However, the Life Smart Coaching Services (formerly, Plan Smart Services) and Busy Family online services are not available outside of North America. Individuals can access the EFAP outside of Canada either online using the Homeweb website or by calling collect at 604-689-1717.
Who do I contact if I have a concern?
If you have a question or concern about any of the services provided by Homewood Health, please feel free to call the Client Service Centre (1-800-663-1142). You can provide your feedback directly to the representative handling your call. Homewood Health is dedicated to ensuring that you are completely satisfied with their services and will work with you to make certain that is the case.
The EAP Committee welcomes employees’ confidential feedback on the EFAP as it will help inform future decisions. Feedback can be directed back to any member of the EAP Committee.
Is the EFAP with Homewood the same as the Homewood coverage available through the extended health benefit with Great-West Life?
No. The Homewood Health Centre in Guelph, Ontario provides assistance for people living with mental health or addiction problems to get the support and treatment they need to make their lives better. It is separate and distinct from the EFAP within the Homewood Health organization and provides individuals with a different level of care. There is typically a significant waiting period (i.e. 6-8 weeks) to receive treatment through Homewood Health Centre.
A medical referral is required to access the Homewood Health Centre.
Does the entended health benefit still offer counselling coverage?
Yes, the existing coverage through Great-West Life did not change with the introduction of the EFAP with Homewood Health. Specifically, the extended health benefit continues to provide the following coverage:
- 80% reimbursement for counselling services up to the annual per person maximum
- 60 days per person lifetime maximum for treatment from the Homewood Health Centre in Guelph, Ontario