October 2014
Critical Response AssociatesVolume 14 Issue 5


I hope you are all well, enjoying the cooler weather, as we soon are to be headed into the "Holiday Season". This week's newsletter addresses a frequent question often asked by our newer corporate clients, when they first begin utilizing our services: Is Critical Response Associates (CRA) like an EAP program?


The answer is actually "not at all", but it is understandable that often that answer may not be immediately obvious. Since our consultants are generally licensed psychologists, there is a common misperception that we are automatically providing healthcare or counseling services.


I have asked one of our associates, Dr. Nancy Gup, to address this issue. Nancy works in both areas, as a threat assessment consultant with CRA and as a provider of EAP services through her organization, Gup & Associates, Inc.  CRA has a partnership with Nancy's group when our clients may have a need for EAP services - in addition to the crisis and risk management services that CRA provides.

Marc McElhaney, PhD

CEO, Critical Response Associates


 Employee Assistance Programs and CRA 

What distinguishes the services offered through Critical Response Associates (CRA) and an Employee Assistance Program? A lot, actually. This brief news article is aimed to help you to decipher and decide when reaching out to your Employee Assistance provider is best, versus requesting the services of Critical Response Associates.

To summarize CRA's services, I have listed the following critical elements:

  1. CRA's focus and primary purpose is risk assessment and management. Our job is to address and eventually help mitigate any risks related to your company.
  2. CRA's client is the organization, not the individual of concern or any particular member of the organization.
  3. All of our consultants are licensed and specialize in threat assessment and crisis management. All of our psychologists have at least 15 years of experience in this specialty field.
  4. CRA is in direct communication with company representatives as an ongoing part of our consultation process. We work very closely as part of the company's team - with management, corporate security, human resources, legal counsel, etc. - to make sure that we address the needs of the organization.
  5. We do not have confidential relationships with employees that we assess. As threat assessment consultants, we are not operating as counselors, treatment providers or medical evaluators.
  6. Case management can be short-term or long-term, depending on the needs of the organization.
  7. As part of this process, CRA seeks to understand the client organization - it's structure, policies, goals, and business needs.


What are the services customarily provided through an Employee Assistance Program (EAP)?

  1. EAPs offer counseling services for employees under stress - offered either telephonically or in person. EAPs typically would not typically offer threat assessment services for the client company, and generally do not have providers who have experience in forensic consultation or in the field of threat assessment.
  2. EAP's client is the person (the employee) seeking counseling.
  3. Level of Education and Credentials - The majority of providers on the Employee Assistance Program panel are generally licensed at the Masters level.
  4. The Employee Assistance Program typically cannot engage with the company since their client is the employee, not the company.
  5. Unless there is a mandatory referral process in place, the designated EAP provider is bound by confidentiality. Critical issues, including risks, that may arise during the counseling or as follow-up cannot generally be shared with the organization.
  6. Counseling services are for issues that can be addressed on a short-term basis - for a fixed number of sessions, as agreed upon in the contract with the designated company.
  7. The EAP provider is not usually familiar to your company such that they can work collaboratively with your decision-makers. Most EAPs are outsourced to one of our major health care provider insurers (i.e., Cigna, BCBS, AETNA, etc.).


Does CRA work with EAPs? Most definitely! We are a great believer in the benefits of an EAP program as a provider for critical counseling services to the organization's employees. Our recommendations to our client companies during high-risk events often include a referral to the company's EAP programs. As part of that process, we have worked very closely with many EAP programs, who have been very critical in providing needed mental health and support services to employees.


Dr. McElhaney has routinely endorsed EAP programs in his leadership team meetings and presentations, as being one of the requisite services that can help prevent workplace violence by addressing employee stress.


If you have any questions about this or related issues, please feel free to contact us at CRA. We are always here to help.


Nancy Gup, Ph.D.

Critical Response Associates, LLC

Gup & Associates, Inc.



Quick Links

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Dr.McElhaney's textbook is
also available in EBook.

Critical Response Associates has developed a training/awareness program for all employees and supervisors.