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Benefits companies offer free resources during coronavirus

From fitness videos and meditation apps to financial wellness and mental health help, a look at new resources available to aid employers and employees.
By: | April 2, 2020 • 4 min read

As the coronavirus pandemic rages on, benefits companies are stepping up to help employers and employees with a number of free resources and services.

Wellness videos, financial classes, mental health assistance and meditation apps are all on offer as firms and providers expand and roll out resources and services in response to COVID-19, which is upending the economy and country and leaving employers in need of more support.

Benefits companies are in a unique position to offer support as employers and employees deal with questions and concerns over healthcare coverage, financial wellness and more. HR tech companies similarly have stepped up during with apps and other resources.

Read all of HRE’s coronavirus coverage here.

Here’s a rundown of some of the services being offered by benefits firms.

Aetna is offering free employee assistance program offerings through its EAP, called Resources For Living. Support and resources will be available to individuals and organizations who have been impacted by COVID-19 whether or not they have RFL included as part of their benefits, the health insurer says. Individuals and organizations who don’t have RFL can contact the service at 1-833-327-AETNA.

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Benefitfocus, a benefits tech firm, launched a COVID-19 resource center for its employer clients that addresses the pandemic and its impact on benefits-related operations and communications. It includes health insights, CDC updates, industry best practices and internal communication tools.

CareATC, an onsite healthcare services company, rolled out a free coronavirus resource center. It includes recommendations for employers on what they can do in response to the pandemic and a COVID-19 self-screening tool.

DailyPay, an instant pay app that works with employers like Sprinkles Bakery and Vera Bradley, is waiving fees for access to earned income for all employees of companies who offer DailyPay. The waived fees will be in effect until further notice.

DirectPath, a benefits education firm, is providing free access for 90 days to a COVID-19 hotline to answer general questions about avoidance, symptoms, testing and treatment. The service is available to all U.S. employers that contact them at contact@directpathhealth.com.

Evive, a benefits tech firm, launched Evive.Care, a COVID-19 testing center search tool, which is free and available to everyone. Users can enter their state and county and the site displays a list of nearby COVID-19 testing centers. The company says its clinical research team is updating the list of centers on an ongoing basis, and continuously review credible data sources, including government websites of each state, city, and county department of public health.

FinFit, a financial wellness company that works with 150,000 employers, is opening up its platform free of charge to any employer that wants to offer financial wellness resources for their employees. It will be free through June 30. Any employer that wishes to offer the FinFit platform to its employees should email or call the company, and FinFit will be activated for their organization. Additionally, the company also launched a coronavirus resource center.

Ginger, a mental health company, is offering free behavioral health coaching for frontline healthcare workers; making Ginger’s COVID-19 in-app resources free and available to the general public; and waiving annual commitments for new employer clients. For new employer clients, Ginger’s benefits program includes on-demand coaching, teletherapy and telepsychiatry. Employers can learn more at www.ginger.io/employers or email theteam@ginger.io.

Headspace, an online healthcare company that focuses on meditation, is sharing free Headspace for Work tools and resources—previously made available to customers—to “address teams and businesses all around the world who are being affected by the growing public health crisis,” the company says. Headspace is sharing curated mindfulness content, resources and a tailored toolkit. The new collection of meditations and exercises, available to all employees and employers for free, “is designed to help us weather the storm together,” the company says.

HealthTap, a healthcare company that focuses on virtual care, is offering a free virtual doctor visit to anyone in the U.S. in “an effort to help meet the incredible need,” the company says. People can sign up on the company’s website.

LearnLux, a financial wellness provider, launched a three-month free financial wellness program for employers and individuals during the coronavirus pandemic. It includes a free version of the LearnLux platform that offers digital education, interactive tools and access to independent financial advisers for anyone that needs it. Individuals can request access to LearnLux through July 15 on the company’s website. Employers can contact partner@learnlux.com to set up the free trial.

Limeade, an employee engagement software company, is offering a free “Limeade Care in Crisis” edition of its product. This self-service version leverages the core features from Limeade designed to help companies show care to their employees as well as reduce fear and isolation during crises. This will be available through Aug. 31 to organizations with no commitment.

Smartpath, a financial wellness company, rolled out a COVID-19 financial help center that includes financial classes, webinars and other tips for navigating market volatility and financial fragility during the coronavirus pandemic. It’s available for all employers and employees.

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Wellbeats, a wellness company, is offering U.S. employers free access to its catalog of on-demand, virtual wellness classes through April 30. Wellbeats President and CEO Jason Von Bank says Wellbeats is offering its full library of more than 500 on-demand fitness, nutrition and mindfulness classes to employers “who want to ensure employees can maintain fitness and well-being routines while working from home.” The offer is available to employers in the United States who do not currently contract with Wellbeats.

Wisdom Labs, a wellness company, is offering its Wise@Work App and Virtual Communities Program to all employers for free through the end of June. Its Wise@Work app includes lessons and practices to navigate fear and anxiety and tips for better sleep. Its Virtual Communities Program is a weekly 30-minute online gathering designed for employees to engage in social connection and build skills to navigate the COVID-19 crisis, the company says. Employers can sign up on the company’s website.

Kathryn Mayer is HRE’s benefits editor and chair of the Health & Benefits Leadership Conference. She has covered benefits for the better part of a decade, and her stories have won multiple awards, including a Jesse H. Neal Award and honors from the American Society of Business Publication Editors and the National Federation of Press Women. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Denver. She can be reached at kmayer@lrp.com.

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