RBC Insurance announces mental health support program

By Andrew Rickard | October 06 2016 01:30PM

Photo: Freepik

RBC Insurance has signed an exclusive agreement with Best Doctors Canada to provide mental health support to its disability insurance clients

The insurer says the new program, which is called "Onward", will help its group and individual clients with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues recover and return to work sooner. RBC Insurance points to research from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) which found that one in five Canadians experience a mental health issue in any given year, and notes that almost 30% of all its group disability claims are related to mental health.

Onward will offer clients access to psychologists and include includes 12 therapy sessions that can be conducted digitally from home, eliminating the stress and cost of travel to an appointment. The program will also arrange for a psychiatrist to provide a diagnosis and treatment recommendations to the client's physician, and an advocate will be assigned to each client to guide him or her through the process. In a pilot of the program earlier this year, there was a 40% reduction in claim durations; RBC says this was due to reduced wait times and changes to both the diagnosis and treatment plans of those who participated.

"Given the statistics, almost every single Canadian has been either directly or indirectly impacted by mental illness," says John Carinci, vice-president of group and business markets at RBC Insurance "This has taken a huge toll on individuals, families, and the overall economy. We fundamentally believe that the Onward Program is a pivotal step forward in positively changing the lives of those who struggle with their mental health daily."