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Mental Health

The Mass General Brigham Employee Assistance Program is available to help with a variety of mental health issues and concerns. Coping with a mental health problem for you, a family member, or friend can be challenging and navigating the mental health system can seem overwhelming for all those impacted. Below are some helpful resources. Please contact the EAP at 866-724-4327 if you need further assistance for yourself or someone you care about.

Suicide Prevention Hotlines & Assistance

 

Mass General Brigham EAP RU OK? Program
Reaching out to a colleague to ask, “RU OK?”

 

EAP News Articles


EAP Mental Health Series


Lyra Health for AllWays Select & Plus Health Plan Members

Lyra Health offers immediate access to a care navigator and individualized mental health care, including self-guided programs, coaching, therapy, and medication management. Lyra is available to Mass General Brigham employees with AllWays Health Partners Select or Plus plans and their families. Learn more at allways.lyrahealth.com  or call AHP customer service at 844-451-3520.

MBG Employee Updates

Information about Specific Mental Health Conditions

Suicide Prevention

The topic of suicide is often not discussed or stigmatized.  Having feelings of being suicidal or interacting with someone who is struggling with this can seem intimidating or scary. However, most people who have suicidal ideation (thoughts of suicide) can be helped and go on to recover and thrive. An important step is understanding suicide and how to get or provide help. We offer some general resources below. If you have concerns, contact the EAP or one of the hotlines listed. In an emergency, always call 911.


General Resources

 

Hotlines & Assistance


Resources for at-risk Populations

There are certain groups which have higher risk for and prevalence of suicide. Below are some resources for these populations:

 

Eating Disorders

Eating disorders happen as a result of severe disturbances in eating behavior, such as unhealthy reduction of food intake or extreme overeating. These patterns can be caused by feelings of distress or concern about body shape or weight, and they harm normal body composition and function. A person with an eating disorder may have started out just eating smaller or larger amounts of food than usual, but at some point, the urge to eat less or more spirals out of control.

Eating disorders are very complex, and despite scientific research to understand them, the biological, behavioral, and social underpinnings of these illnesses remain elusive. Eating disorders frequently develop during adolescence or early adulthood, but some reports indicate their onset can occur during childhood or later in adulthood. Many adolescents are able to hide these behaviors from their family for months or years. Eating disorders are not due to a failure of will or behavior; rather, they are real, treatable medical illnesses in which certain abnormal patterns of eating take on a life of their own.

Anorexia nervosa, a form of self-starvation, is characterized by a distorted body image that leads to restricted eating and other behavior that prevents a person from gaining weight. The majority of those affected are females (90-95%), although these statistics are changing as males are now more frequently affected. Initially identified in upper- and middle-class families, anorexia is now known to be found in all socioeconomic groups and a variety of ethnic and racial groups.

Bulimia is characterized by uncontrolled episodes of overeating, called bingeing, followed by purging with methods such as vomiting or misuse of laxatives. Bingeing is eating much larger amounts of food than you would normally eat in a short period of time, usually less than 2 hours. The binge-purge cycles can happen from many times a day to several times a week. Bulimia most often affects females and starts during the teenage years, but it can also affect males. Other illnesses, such as substance misuse, anxiety disorders, and mood disorders are common in people with bulimia.

Binge eating disorder is an illness that involves overeating in a specific, defined period of time. More food is eaten than others eat in the same amount of time, under the same circumstances. It differs from bulimia as individuals do not purge their bodies of the excess food via vomiting, laxative misuse, or diuretic misuse. Binge eating disorder is found in about 1% to 2% of the general population and is seen more often in women than men.

An estimated .5-3.7% of females struggle with anorexia in their lifetime, while an estimated 1.1-4.2% of females have bulimia in their lifetime. Community surveys have estimated that between 2% and 5% of Americans experience binge eating disorder in a six-month period.

Helpful Eating Disorders Resources

Common Treatments for Mental Health Conditions

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy & iCBT

  • Psychology Today – Understanding Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • SilverCloud iCBT Program for MGB Employees
    For some, online CBT (iCBT) can be helpful and convenient. SilverCloud is a free online, self-directed course CBT course, which includes some added well-being activities, for individuals with low to moderate levels of depression or anxiety. SilverCloud can help clients to manage their symptoms using modules in:

    • Depression
    • Anxiety
    • Stress
    • Insomnia
    • Resilience
    • COVID-19.Employees, IHP students and household members (over the age of 18) can access this program via a mobile device or desktop computer. Referrals can be done via your PCP, the EAP or self-referral.

    Help with Getting a Mental Health Referral

    Considerations when Seeking a Referral

    Whether you seek a mental health provider through the EAP or another source, you will want to identify how to best meet your needs. You may not get to “tick every box” if you want a referral more quickly. Like many relationships, the therapeutic one should be a good fit for you. Try to be open-minded and avoid immediate judgment. It may take a few sessions to know if you have a reasonable match. Some factors to consider:

    • Therapist characteristics – specialty, gender
    • Type of intervention needed
    • Visit frequency
    • Office/clinic type – hospital-based, agency, private practice
    • Timing – do you need help immediately, what accommodates your schedule?
    • Setting/Platform – in-person, virtual (video, online program, phone)

    What to Expect with a Referral through the EAP

    All employees and family household members who want to discuss needs around a mental health issue can contact the EAP for an assessment or assistance with a referral.  You can request an appointment at866-724-4327 or via our online form for confidential assistance. Here are some things you can expect from an appointment:

    • One or more sessions with an EAP counselor to provide an assessment of the problem and to identify options for assistance and/or a referral.
    • The EAP counselor will work within your insurance coverage and preferences (location, time, clinician characteristics) to identify a suitable therapist.
    • Please note that requests for evening or weekend appointments and in-person therapy tend to represent longer wait times.
    • The EAP is a free service but referrals outside the EAP typically have costs (some covered by insurance and some not, for example, co-pays).

    Mental Health Referrals through Lyra for AllWays Select & Plus Health Plan Members

    Lyra Health offers immediate access to a care navigator and individualized mental health care, including self-guided programs, coaching, therapy, and medication management. Lyra is available to Mass General Brigham employees with AllWays Health Partners Select or Plus plans and their families. Learn more at allways.lyrahealth.com  or call AHP customer service at 844-451-3520.

    Other Common Therapy Referral Pathways

    Please note that the EAP does not vet or specifically endorse the  providers listed in these platforms.

     

    MGB Employee Mental Health Clinics

    Mass General Brigham employees, faculty and staff have access to some internal mental health clinics for care. You may self refer or go through the EAP to get a referral. Please check for eligibility.

    Mental Health & Diverse Populations
    Coping with Mental Illness
    Mental Health Research Programs at Mass General Brigham

    The Mass General Brigham hospitals are leading researchers in Psychiatry and Neuroscience.
    These programs committed to better understanding mental health, and to using that knowledge to create more effective treatments. Patients and volunteers in these programs are an important part of that work. Sometimes these programs offer quicker avenues to accessing treatment. Below is some information on these programs. Please consult your provider or these programs to learn more.

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