Military EAP Risks Trust

by Michael Reeder on April 19, 2011

Military OneSource is an employee assistance program (EAP) run by Ceridian for DOD that effective January 1st started requiring therapists to UPLOAD EACH TREATMENT NOTE to them in order to get paid. The potential for abuse is unbelievably high. They also forbid therapists from treating certain common conditions (PTSD anyone?).

There is a recent article in the Missoulan newspaper entitled “Missoula therapist fights human resources firm over confidentiality, PTSD treatment for soldiers” that explores this issue in some depth.  You should take the time to read it here.

The argument that 100% of treatment notes need to be uploaded to a central computer for quality control simply does not hold water. The argument that short-term EAP counseling is not the place for long-term therapy concerns falls apart when you realize that they typically authorize 12 sessions (about 3 months) of EAP work before referral to an ongoing therapist. What — you are not supposed to work on the real issues for 3 months?  EAP benefits strictly for the purpose of assessment and referral typically (and unfortunately) are only authorized for about 3 sessions.

This sort of thing cannot be left unchallenged by clients or therapists if we wish to continue trusting in the privacy and efficacy of therapy.  It is entirely possible that nothing inappropriate will happen with those uploaded notes — but why should clients have to trust that?

Clients need to be able to trust that their sessions are confidential and that their therapists can treat them for whatever ails them if within the skill set of the therapist.

This sort of increasing control over therapy services by insurance companies is typically pitched in terms of quality of care, but could so easily stray into denial of care or workplace ramifications.  It is a slippery slope.

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