FAQ's

  • What is the Employee & Family Assistance Program (EFAP)?

    The EFAP is a voluntary program that offers free confidential counselling services to a number of different organizations. The EFAP is a non-profit program of Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH).

  • Who can use the EFAP?

    The EFAP is offered to all eligible employees and family members*. This usually includes: full-time, part-time, casual, LTD, and terminated employees (up to 3 months after termination date), their partners, and their dependent children.

    To find out if your organization is serviced by our program, or for more information about eligibility, please contact the EFAP.

    *some exceptions may apply - contact the EFAP for more info

  • How do I contact the EFAP?

    The EFAP can be reached at 1-800-505-4929 or 604-872-4929. Our confidential voicemail system is accessible 24 hours a day, with an after-hours line available for urgent clinical matters.

    In emergency situations, please call 911 or the Vancouver Crisis Line at 604-872-3311.

  • How do I book an appointment?

    Appointments are available from Monday to Friday, with flexible evening times also offered. To book an appointment, call during regular office hours to speak to one of our assistants directly, or you can leave a message anytime on our confidential voicemail system and someone will return your call by the next business day.

  • Is the EFAP Confidential?

    YES. Client confidentiality is a high priority at the EFAP. Some of the measures we take to protect it are:

    • We adhere to strict confidentiality policies when dealing with all clients and client information.
    • In locations with more than one office, we offer private waiting rooms and a separate entrance and exit.
    • We stagger all appointment times to help prevent clients from bumping into each other.
    • We are not networked to any outside computer system so access is restricted to within our program.
    • We ensure only non-identifying statistics are shared with our EFAP Advisory and Joint Committees.
  • Is the EFAP Voluntary?

    YES. All clients access the program on their own accord. The EFAP will not participate in any disciplinary action nor accept mandatory referrals.

  • Is there a cost for the EFAP?

    There is absolutely no cost to employees or family members who wish to use the EFAP. The program is a fully-funded benefit provided by the employer.

  • What are the counsellor's qualifications?

    All EFAP counsellors are advanced clinical therapists with extensive experience and training. They are registered with their respective regulatory bodies, and hold either Doctoral or Master level degrees in Social Work, Counselling Psychology, Marriage & Family Therapy, or other related fields. As senior- level clinicians they use the most current clinical approaches to empower clients to move towards solution and wellness in a short-term frame. For details about our current Team members, please contact the EFAP.

  • Who administers the EFAP?

    The EFAP remains accountable to VCH and to the organizations that it serves. Additionally, an EFAP Advisory Committee, comprised of union and management representatives from the various service sites, provides ongoing guidance and ensures that standards of quality and confidentiality are met. The Committee meets on a regular basis and has an annually nominated Chair position that rotates between union and management. For a list of the current Committee members, please contact the EFAP.

  • What kinds of issues can the EFAP help with?

    The EFAP provides free confidential assistance for a wide range of concerns including, but not limited to:

    Personal Issues

    • anxiety, stress
    • grief, loss
    • depression
    • body image
    • sexual concerns
    • social, self esteem
    • culture, race, religion
    • substance misuse
    • spirituality

    Relationship Issues

    • marital, couple
    • family concerns
    • divorce, separation
    • parenting
    • eldercare
    • domestic violence
    • cross-cultural issues
    • blended families

    Workplace Issues

    • change & transition
    • workload
    • interpersonal conflict
    • stress, burnout
    • communication issues

    Referrals to community resources can also be provided (i.e.: for legal or financial issues) to which there may be a cost associated.