Health events occur in different ways - we help you and your employees through them. We offer a unique end-to-end absence and disability management solution - from early intervention, to return to work and regular health. Our experienced case managers focus on abilities, positive goals and the best possible outcomes for you and your employees.

We identify and work through the medical and non-medical factors affecting your employee’s health event at the earliest stages. We leverage technology to optimize the case management of your employees’ claims to improve the outcome and successful return to work. We stay on top of the issues that often prolong absence and work with you to resolve them. All of which helps you to understand the risks that face your employees and manage your business better.

The breadth and depth of our disability organization is unparalleled with over 1200 dedicated team members spread across nine offices, coast to coast. As one of the top providers of disability management solutions in Canada, we have the tools and talent to help optimize your organization’s short term absence approach. Our vast experience with organizations of all shapes and sizes is behind us – helping us find the best solution for you and your employees. 

Choices to suit your needs

Our short term solution can be adapted to the needs of your organization with options and financial arrangements to suit your unique requirements. Your options include:


An offering based on monthly premiums for annual cost certainty. Benefit payments are issued to your employees from Manulife.

Administrative Services Only (ASO)

A self-insured offering on a fee-for-service basis. ASO helps ensure your employees are well managed and payments are issued, but you have greater control on claim costs and final decisions.

Salary Continuance

Whether all cases are included or just a select few, this service offers a fully outsourced model of claims management, while retaining both salary continuance and control of expenses.

Early Intervention Stay at Work Services

Stay at work services provides guidance with intermittent absences, workplace accommodation requests, physical demands analysis, or ergonomic assessments. This fee-for-service program can overlap an existing product.

Expert Case Management

Our experienced case management teams are supported by an extensive network of rehabilitation specialists, mental health experts, work facilitation specialists and a broad medical consultant network.

Manulife’s tools and partnerships help ensure case managers achieve the best possible health outcomes:

  • Independent medical examinations with condition specific specialists.
  • Second opinion services to help validate treatment direction.  
  • Functional Capacity Evaluations to support successful returns to work. 
  • Virtual healthcare options, including condition-specific medical management.
  • Virtual assessment and digital Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for mental health conditions.
  • Robust Physical Activation Program partnerships.
  • Thorough cognitive assessments and return to work focused treatment.

If you have a self-insured program with no expense formula, don’t worry - case management tools are still available.

The Power of Combining Benefits

Here’s another advantage – by combining short term absence with extended health benefit coverage, we can help you support total health management.

Total health management unlocks the power of available benefits and services that optimize employee health.  This includes:

  • Drug interaction risk reviews that promote the best solutions for members.
  • Identification and education on available paramedical resources such as physiotherapy, psychotherapy and other condition-specific programs.
  • Summaries of available coverage balances to reduce out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Optimized maintenance of chronic conditions following return to work.

Outcome Focused Management

We support you and your employees every step of the way. Our end-to-end case management approach focuses on positive outcomes and managed solutions – helping lead to earlier and safe resolution.

Managed Application Process

Our early intervention approach means early access with direct contact to help applications start quicker. By simplifying the process, we can make it easier for employees to understand their options and begin their journey to recovery.

Clear Communications

Direct and automated communication, backed by behavioural science, is key to managing healthy outcomes. We’re there every step of the way with the information you and your employees need to understand the process and the next steps.

Focus on Mental Health

Mental health concerns are one of the top reasons employees go on disability1. That’s why we promote a strong focus on supporting mental health - from prevention and early intervention through to recovery and successful return to work.

How our approach can help your organization

Our goal is to help instil a positive mindset around absence in your organization – one that promotes wellness, recovery and return to work. Our proactive approach to short term absence management helps you get the best value from your plan dollars. Here’s some of the ways how:

  • Greater certainty around absence and people management
    Your employees help drive your business success. When employees are absent from work, you need to know whether the accommodations in place are appropriate and how long such absences may take. We harness analytic reporting to provide meaningful insights into what’s happening with absences in your organization. This viewpoint is essential to understand and maintain the productivity of your workplace. 
  • Better understand and manage performance in your workplace
    Presenteeism – when your employees are at work but not at their best – is as important to understand as absenteeism. With an integration of health and wellness services and our early intervention stay at work support program, we can help you avoid this risk to your organization. All of which helps you better understand and manage your high performing team – helping keep more employees heathy, productive and at work.
  • Access to leading edge tools and health management partners.
    Having the right tools and support in place can mean better health outcomes for your employees. The healthcare landscape is constantly evolving and finding the right solutions can be confusing and time consuming. We carefully curate and invest in the right solutions and partners - from our in-house rehabilitation program to virtual healthcare and second opinion services. This helps ensure your employees have the right tools and support necessary for recovery and successful return to work.

Facts about short term absence in Canada

  • Improved disability management is on the top four wish list of health benefit enhancements for plan sponsors.2
  • 68% of employers have a formal absence and disability management strategy in place.3
  • 80% of sponsors would like to better understand the rates and causes of absenteeism in their organization.2
  • 63% of sponsors are concerned about employees moving into Long Term Disability.2
  • Mental health and musculoskeletal issues and illnesses are the top two reasons employees go on short term disability.3
  • Organizations without a short-term disability plan experience almost twice the paid sick leave costs as those with a plan.5
  • 63% of employers offer stay-at-work programs for their employees.3

1.  Making the Case for Investing in Mental Health in Canada, Mental Health Commission of Canada, 2013
2. The Sanofi Canada Healthcare Survey, 2019
3. Absence and Disability Management: Trends in Organizational Health Management, The Conference Board of Canada, 2018
4. Canadian Survey on Disability, Stats Canada, 2017
5. Benefits Benchmarking 2019: Innovation and Flexibility Lead the Way, M.Haberl and N.Stewart, The Conference Board of Canada, 2019

Speak to your Manulife representative to discuss group benefit plan options to help meet your business needs.