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Shoppers Drug Mart and SilverCloud Health team

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Deal brings leading digital mental health solution to Canadian employers.

TORONTO — Shoppers Drug Mart announced a partnership with SilverCloud Health, a global leader in digital mental health solutions. The partnership will enable Canadian employers to include SilverCloud Health’s award-winning, clinically proven digital mental health platform for cognitive behavioral  therapy (CBT) as part of their health benefit plans, for use by employees with mental health issues such as depression and/or anxiety.

The Health Solutions by Shoppers group works with Canadian employers with employee health benefit plans, by providing innovative programs and services that support the health of employees.

“As the exclusive Canadian partner of SilverCloud Health, we are excited to bring their digital cognitive behavioral platform to employers,” says Mark Rolnick, vice president, payor partnerships and plan sponsor innovation at Shoppers Drug Mart. “Canadian employers will be able to supplement their coverage of drug therapy, which is often an important part of treatment and recovery, with an innovative, cost-effective psychotherapy offering.”

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of psychological treatment that has been demonstrated to be effective for a range of problems including depression, anxiety disorders, and other severe mental illnesses.  CBT focuses on challenging and changing cognitive distortions and behaviors, improving emotional regulation, and the development of personal coping strategies that target solving problems.

Mental health issues such as depression and anxiety can have the greatest negative impact on productivity and absenteeism in the workplace. Canadian research estimates that about half of employees with depression do not get treatment. Major barriers include stigma, poor access to care due to wait times or inconvenience and affordability (since many benefit plans limit their coverage for psychotherapy, which can lead to high out-of-pocket costs).

SilverCloud Health’s mental health platform, validated by clinical research, show that up to 70% of people achieve a clinical recovery.

SilverCloud Health’s platform includes behavioral health coaching support for depression and anxiety programs staffed by trained social workers and self help programs available from stress management and resiliency.

“Whole health care must include mental health care – Employers and health systems alike are increasingly recognizing the importance of whole health of their employees. The partnership between Shoppers Drug Mart and SilverCloud enables the potential for Canadians now to have earlier, easier access to evidence-based, digital mental treatment for depression, anxiety and stress anytime they need it,” says Ken Cahill, chief executive officer and cofounder of Silvercloud Health.

A large employer itself, Shoppers Drug Mart is leading by example by incorporating the SilverCloud mental health platform into its own health benefit plan. “As an organization with a large network of retail pharmacies across the country, we are very much aware of the impact that poor mental health can have on employees as well as their co-workers and the customers they serve. We’re thrilled to offer and promote digital  cognitive behavioural therapy to all employers in our retail network and their employees, and we encourage other employers to do the same,” says Zebrina Kassam, senior vice president, human resources at Shoppers Drug Mart.

A recent analysis by Deloitte shows that companies that invest in their employees’ mental health see a return of investment ratio of 1.5:1. Programs such as the SilverCloud mental health platform can therefore help employers improve both the health of their employees as well as their financial bottom line.


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