May 19, 2020
Different, memorable, and strange may be the first thoughts that come to mind when Canadians reflect on our first, and hopefully the last, pandemic Victoria Day Weekend. Last week we received some great news with the provinces announcing a gradual move to open up some industries and businesses giving us all much needed sense of encouragement towards having a precious notion of ‘choice’ slowly added back to our daily lives.
History has taught us that with dramatic and catastrophic events societies bounce back and create change towards the next norm. Many changes will emerge in the delivery of consumer services, health care, professional and retail. Everything will seem different and be delivered differently post-pandemic.
During these unprecedented times, the health care industry has made incredible strides in managing the process during the crisis. One resulting by-product of the pandemic has been the transformation of the hands-on, face-to-face, daily medical contact delivery model into a virtual electronic service. Consumers not having much choice (due to the pandemic) have shown increased interest and confidence towards adopting the new model of medical services delivery. Online services such as PocketPills for prescriptions and MindBeacon for digital therapy have seen significant increases doubling and tripling use of the services. The pandemic has seen a shift in consumer attitudes towards virtual provider networks for the efficiency of convenience and safety. A further shift will cause private payors’ health benefit plans and the government to rethink their plan offerings for increased access to virtual services and acceptable methods for virtual delivery.
One such excellent example of this emerging model is found in the commitment of the Federal and Provincial Governments providing Canadians with excellent mental health support avenues for individuals at risk or in need of support while working through the crisis. Here is a link to the Canadian site for COVID-19 Mental Health.
In addition to the government and medicals sites, many employee health plan strategies include an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). We encourage all employers to provide and promote these services during and after the pandemic. EAPs offer counselling services to assist with information, crisis, and daily bumps in the road we encounter throughout our lives – financial, relationship, emotional etc., including COVID-19 which has shown to be bump in everyone’s road! For those employers that have an EAP program or are in need to provide or further promote these services to your employees, give us a call and we will work to build on your current communications plan.
As individuals, we have seen wonderful acts of kindness in our communities throughout the last two months. If we amplify these acts and perform acts of our own, we will be developing a better, kinder, future normal. We get back as much when we give, and more. Today we would like to challenge you to a call to action with the goal of creating a couple positive habits. The Matheis team is challenging you to do the following everyday:
- Stimulate your mind – learn about something new – fact based – read an article, watch a TED talk or documentary, and share your new interest with someone.
- Stretch your body – take three minutes and stand up, stretch your arms up, touch the ground (try), put your shoulders back and take in a few deep breaths.
- Perform an act of kindness – it’s good for the soul – it can be as simple as looking someone in the eyes and smiling…genuinely – could be your child, partner, stranger on the street, or the next person in line at the grocery store;
We all need to look after ourselves and each other. Be well.