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Frequently Asked Questions about Employee Assistance Plan (Impact Solutions)

1. What is the Impact Solutions Employee Assistance Plan (EAP)?

The Impact Solutions EAP is a benefit available to benefit-eligible employees and their family members to confidential professional support available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  All Impact counselors are qualified masters/doctoral level professionals.

The Impact program also includes access to:

  • Unlimited phone consultation;
  • Five (5) complimentary face-to-face counseling sessions per person per occurrence; and
  • An expansive collection of resources - available online at the Impact website.

2. Why use the EAP?

We all experience ups and downs in life.  It's impossible to avoid the many stresses, conflicts, and challenges that occur in modern life.  Often we resolve these situations on our own or with the help of family and friends.  Sometimes, however, it helps to talk to an experienced counselor.

3. Who is eligible for the EAP?

All full-time, benefit-eligible employees, their household members, dependents (in and away from home), and parents/parents-in-law are eligible.

4. Can family members use the EAP?

Any benefit-eligible employee and/or their family members can access the EAP.  Family members do not have to be dependent or immediate family members to use the EAP as long as they live in the employee's home.  Either the employee or family member may initiate the process by contacting the EAP.  Parents and parents-in-laws who reside outside of the employee home may also initiate contact with the EAP on their own.

5. What kinds of problems can the EAP help with?

Just about any kind of concern imaginable can be brought to the EAP.  They range from simple to complex situations and fall mainly into the following categories:

  • Stress, Anxiety and Depression
  • Marital and Divorce
  • Family and Parenting Problems
  • Alcohol and Other Drug Dependencies
  • Budget and Debt Problems
  • Bereavement and Other Losses
  • Change in the Workplace
  • Child and Eldercare Needs
  • Legal Matters

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6. Where are the EAP provider's offices?

Impact EAP provider offices are conveniently located throughout Hamilton County.  The Impact EAP provider network is also available throughout Ohio, the continental U.S. and Canada.  This is particularly helpful for employees who have parents, parent-in-laws and dependent children out of state that may require local counseling assistance.

7. What's the EAP counseling like?

The EAP counselor provides short-term counseling to help you sort things out and get to the heart of the problem.  It is a solution-focused, problem-solving approach to develop a strategy to resolve the situation.  If ongoing or specialized services are needed, the counselor will refer you to several resources that have been screened and evaluated.  In many cases we have received feedback from other employees about these resources.  The counselor will follow up with you to insure you're satisfied and making progress.

8. How many sessions can I have?

Our EAP provides up to five (5) sessions per person per problem.  We always keep the door open though, so if you use your EAP sessions and your situation flares up, you may see the counselor again to re-assess what is needed.  You may use the EAP more than once in a year if it's for a different problem.

The EAP's role is not to provide long-term counseling or therapy, but to help you sort things out, develop an action plan and provide targeted referrals for ongoing or specialized services if needed.  Many people come for one, two, or three sessions and say they find it very helpful to talk things out with an objective, experienced professional.

9. When should you use the EAP?

Whenever you feel the need to talk to someone objective, experienced, and non-judgmental.  We suggest the earlier the better.  Waiting or ignoring a problem usually makes things worse.

10. Isn't EAP just for people who have substance abuse and depression problems?

Absolutely not.  The EAP provides resources and references for a broad range of life situations including: relationships, parenting, financial/legal matters, daily living issues, workplace stress and many other work/life related issues.

11. Is my problem big enough to call the EAP for help?  When can I call?

No problem is too small for the EAP.  In fact, we encourage you to call when a concern first develops.  Remember, reaching out for help is a sign of strength, not weakness.  Usually the sooner you share a problem, the sooner you begin to find a solution.  The EAP offers a 24-hour help line for your convenience.

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12. Who am I reaching when I dial the EAP 800 number?

You are contacting Impact Solutions in Cleveland, Ohio.  This office is staffed by licensed and certified mental health professionals. They can offer resources as well as referrals to mental health professionals in your geographic area.

13. What are the qualifications of EAP staff?

The EAP's counselors are highly qualified with diverse professional backgrounds as therapists, educators, and consultants on mental health issues.  The Impact line is answered 24/7 by highly qualified licensed mental health professionals with a Master's degree education or above.

14. Can I take work time for an appointment or do I have to schedule my appointment on my own time?

You can visit and EAP provider during work time (just as you can visit your primary care physician, dentist, or other medical specialist), if approved by your immediate supervisor.  Your time should be reported as sick time.  Remember, you'll be able to contact the EAP anytime, 24/7, to discuss issues over the phone as well.

15. Will participation in EAP counseling services jeopardize my position?

No.  Faculty and staff will not be penalized for participation.

16. Will my manager/director/supervisor know if I contact the EAP?

All services are confidential and governed by federal and state laws.  Information will not be shared without your consent or as mandated by law.  Using the program will not affect your job security or advancement and all organizational policies and procedures remain in effect.

17. Will my supervisor know I went to the EAP?

There are generally two ways individuals come to the EAP: on their own or because their supervisor referred them to Impact EAP.

If you come to the EAP on your own, Impact EAP is under no obligation (except as noted above as the exceptions to confidentiality) to disclose anything to your supervisor and will not do so without your consent.

If Impact EAP is aware that your supervisor referred you, you will be asked to sign an authorization form and referral notice, this will allow Impact EAP to tell your supervisor that you have made contact and are complying with a plan to address your performance issues.  IMPACT EAP WILL NOT SHARE ANY INFORMATION REGARDING PERSONAL ISSUES THAT ARE DISCUSSED BETWEEN YOU AND YOUR EAP COUNSELOR WITHOUT YOUR AUTHORIZATION TO DO SO.

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18. What if my supervisor wants to know more but I don’t want the information disclosed to him?

You retain the right to tell Impact EAP whether you want more information released or not.  The goal of EAP intervention is to help you address any and all issues that might be contributing to your ability to successfully perform your job.  Although EAP participation is voluntary in most circumstances, it may be strongly advised by your supervisor because they know that life events and stressful circumstances can create problems at work and lead to performance issues.  Your supervisor wants you to have the resources and support in place to help you get back on track at work.  This is why the university has invested in the Impact EAP so you will have a confidential source of help to manage stressful life experiences.

19. What hours can I call the EAP?

You can contact the Impact EAP 24-hours per day, seven (7) days per week by calling the toll-free confidential hotline at 1-800-227-6007. You will speak with a counselor immediately who can provide you with support, guidance and/or crisis intervention depending on your present situation.  If you need to schedule a face-to-face counseling session you will be given the name of a participating provider who can arrange an appointment for you during normal business hours, evenings or on the weekends, as available.  An initial appointment is generally available within one (1) week from the time you call.

20. What about the cost of the EAP?

There is no charge to you for the telephone counseling, five (5) face-to-face counseling sessions, or the referral services provided by Impact EAP.  Impact will make effort to select an EAP provider that also participates in your health care plan.  If the EAP counselor determines more extensive counseling is needed, you will be able to continue with treatment beyond the five (5) EAP sessions using your health care plan.  You may have a deductible and/or co-pay at this time but would not need to change providers unless you so choose.

21. How do I get started?

Call the EAP number: 1-800-227-6007.

22. How Can I learn more about the EAP?

For additional information, log-on to the web at www.myimpactsolution.comYour member log in is: bearcats.  For live, immediate assistance call 1-800-227-6007.

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