Return to work and claim duration for workers with long-term mental disabilities: Impacts of mental health coverage, fringe benifits, and disability management

David S. Salkever, Judith A. Shinogle, Howard Goldman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper examines the relationship of mental health benefits provided by 116 employers, to return to work and duration of disability claims for 407 of their employees who were on long-term disability (LTD) leave for mental disorders. Mental health benefits data were coded from summary plan description booklets provided by employers. Information on other fringe benefits and employers' disability management practices were obtained from a survey of the employers. Relationships between mental health benefit features, other fringe benefit and disability management factors, and our outcomes were estimated via logistic regression and survival analysis. Results indicated that three mental health benefit plan features were negatively related to the return-to-work probability:(1) a high deductible (>$600), (2) longer preexisting condition exclusion periods, and (3) having a carve-out. This suggests that cost saved by access restrictions may be partially offset by higher turnover costs for employees with disabilities due to mental disorders. Carve-outs were also predictive of shorter claims duration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-186
Number of pages14
JournalMental Health Services Research
Volume5
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2003

Keywords

  • Disability management
  • Fringe benefits
  • Long-term disability
  • Mental health benefits
  • Return to work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy

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