Frequently Asked Questions - Employee Assistance and Counseling Center

What is an the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?
Who is eligible for services from the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?
What services are offered at the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?
What should I expect at my first visit?
How long do the counseling sessions last?
What is expected of me?
What about confidentiality?
What is the Online Mental Health Screening?
What financial counseling services are offered at the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?

What is the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?

The UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center is a benefit offered by your employer to help employees identify and resolve problems, which may or may not be impacting their job performance. The UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center offers individual counseling, couples and family counseling, supervisory training, and consultation to reach these goals. The UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center is a confidential employee assistance and counseling program designed to provide employees and their immediate household members with resources for resolving work related and personal problems. We help you clarify issues, explore options and find solutions for successful work/life integration. We help people work through many issues, including:

  • Stress at work or home
  • Couples, relationship or family problems
  • Alcohol or drug addiction
  • Grief and loss
  • Loneliness
  • Communication problems
  • Depression or mood swings
  • Eating disorders
  • Self-esteem issues
  • Stress related to physical or mental illness
  • Stress related to finances
  • Divorce

Who is eligible for services from the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?

Employees in the following organizations and members of their immediate household:

  • UAB
  • UAB Medicine, including:
    • UAB Medical Center Hospitals (UAB Hospital, UAB Hospital Highlands, UAB Hospital Spain Rehabilitation, UAB Hospital Center for Psychiatric Medicine, UAB Hospital Women and Infants Center, UAB Callahan Eye Hospital),
    • UAB Medicine Huntsville
    • UAB Medicine Montgomery
    • UAB Medicine Selma
    • Health Services Foundation (HSF)
    • The Kirklin Clinic
    • Health System Administration.  
  • VIVA
  • Homewood School System

Please see the individual listings in the sidebar for information about services provided by the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center.

The UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center provides services for all eligible persons, without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, or veteran status. If for any reason the counselors of the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center determine that an individual’s needs exceed the services or expertise available at the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center, the counselors will work with the individual to identify an appropriate referral to meet their needs.

If you would like to know if you are eligible for Employee Assistance and Counseling Center services, please call 205.934.2281

What services are offered at the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?

The UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center provides confidential employee assistance and counseling to help you achieve successful work/life integration” immediately after the question and before “The services offered at the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center include:
The services offered at the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center include:

  • Individual counseling
  • Couples counseling
  • Family counseling
  • Financial counseling
  • Supervisor training and consultation
  • Referrals to resources in the community when appropriate
  • Stress management classes
  • Educational programs

For more details about our services see:
Services for Employees
Services for Managers
Programs
Financial Counseling

What should I expect at my first visit?

There are several steps in the counseling process at the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center. As a new client, you are seen for an initial intake assessment where a counselor spends some time with you exploring the issues that have brought you to counseling, your goals, and other information which will help the counselor match you with the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center counselor best suited to help you. Our staff has a diverse background with experience in a variety of areas. We take those factors into consideration when determining the most suitable match between clients and counselors.

You will be asked to sign a very specific limited consent form which will give your counselor permission to consult with the other professional staff members of the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center during the intake assignment and counseling process. This limited consent form only provides your consent for your counselor to consult with other Employee Assistance and Counseling Center professional staff members. It does not provide nor imply consent to release any information to anyone outside of the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center professional staff.

How long do the counseling sessions last?

Counseling sessions are generally 50 minutes in length, and depending upon your current needs and will be scheduled at an interval decided upon by you and your counselor. The number of sessions that will be required to meet your goals is hard to determine.

After exploring and developing sufficient background to proceed, you and your counselor will decide upon specific goals and objectives. Meeting these goals and objectives will likely require strong efforts. In addition, you may experience feelings of discomfort, which are inherent in change. Couples and family counseling may lead to outcomes viewed as undesirable by one of the participants, especially if only one partner is participating in counseling (i.e., a spouse's decision to divorce).

At times the counselor may recommend that your needs would be better served through a referral to another counselor within The Employee Assistance and Counseling Center or through an external agency. In the event that this situation occurs, these options will be thoroughly explored with you. Children under the age of 15 may be referred externally for individual counseling unless seen within the context of family therapy.

Progress will be regularly evaluated in terms of whether counseling is effective in attaining the desired objectives, and by comparing your current situation with your situation when counseling began. Counseling efforts will terminate when the sought-after goals are sufficiently achieved. This will be determined through mutual agreement among the participants and counselor. If at any time you decide to terminate the counseling relationship, it is recommended that you inform your counselor in order to tie up loose ends and to allow for feedback concerning the counseling process.

What is expected of me?

You are expected to attend all appointments as scheduled and on time. If you are unable to attend a scheduled appointment, it is important that you call as soon as possible to cancel that appointment, as there are others who are also in need of our services. If you fail to show up for 2 scheduled appointments without calling to cancel, we may be unable to schedule another appointment until a minimum of 6 weeks has passed.

As a client of The UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center, we ask that you maintain the confidentiality and anonymity of other clients that you encounter while visiting our offices.

For the protection of our clients and staff, please remember that no weapons of any kind are permitted in this building and that no acts of violence, threats of physical harm, or threatening or abusive language will be tolerated. Such behavior may result in arrest and/or termination of Employee Assistance and Counseling Center services.

If you have questions or concerns regarding your counseling objectives, your counselor, or the counseling process, it is your right and responsibility to bring those concerns to your counselor in the counseling sessions.

What about confidentiality?

Every consultation with the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center is strictly confidential. Records related to your visits are stored off site and available only to Employee Assistance and Counseling Center staff. Information is not available for nor included in personnel records. Information about you is protected by law and not released to supervisors, coworkers, friends or family without specific permission approved by you in writing. Exceptions to this are dictated by law in cases such as risk of harm to self or others.

For more details see Confidentiality.

What is the Online Mental Health Screening?

The Online Mental Health Screening link to is a free and anonymous resource for individuals who might be experiencing symptoms of depression or other emotional issues. Your screening score indicates only whether your responses to the questionnaire are consistent with symptoms of any of the following disorders: depression, postpartum depression, bipolar disorder, generalized anxiety disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder. Based on those results, you will receive recommendations of further steps for you to consider.

What financial counseling services are offered at the Employee Assistance and Counseling Center?

Basic financial counseling may be offered at the UAB Employee Assistance and Counseling Center or a referral may be made depending on the level of expertise needed.