By Gina Ballentine of Stage Too
In an effort to offset the rising cost of healthcare, Wal-Mart has announced plans to open psychiatric offices in the majority of their stores by June of 2016. This will add to the already wide range of services available at the retail giant.
The need was realized after corporate HR reviewed finances and noted the company spent over $250 million on mental health in 2015. An overwhelming majority of employees are seeking help for anxiety and PTSD through therapy and medication. Additionally, with the increased use of medication there has also been an increase in errors due to impaired judgment as well as a significant increase in sick leave taken. Many call in due to sleep deprivation, a side effect of the night terrors often experienced due to being subjected to particular events at work.
“I’ve seen some crazy shit since working here. Freaks cannot wait to come up in here and let it all hang out. Literally. You know how many wrinkled up balls I’ve seen in the past few years? Too fuckin’ many,” Sam Freidman, an employee for three years, stated when asked why he thinks this will be beneficial to employees.
“I can’t say I really want to lie on a couch and talk about all the shit I’ve seen, but damn, I need something to help take the edge off. They’re the kind of doctor that can prescribe meds, right?” he asked. “Ever since that woman attempted to steal cookie dough by hiding it up her hoo-ha, I am scared to round the corner too quickly. That was so fucking disgusting I can’t even…” he said, before dry heaving at the memory.
While the need was realized mainly for employees, the offices will also be open to the public.
“I’m right excited!” exclaimed one customer. “I like that it is really a one stop shop. I already can get my tires rotated, my eyes checked, and my groceries. Now I can pop in and get my ‘scripts. If this ain’t convie, uh, convena, uh… easy, I don’t know what is. All they need now is a lady doctor and I can really get everything I need from head to toe,” she said while adjusting the curlers in her hair.
Recruitment for the psychiatrists has been underway for a few weeks, but the resumes are barely trickling in. The plan is to offer incentives such as bonuses, great retirement and healthcare benefits along with a 30% discount in the store and free oil changes for the length of their contract. At a recruiting event, a questionnaire was passed out to try to determine the reasoning behind why these positions are not being sought after. An overwhelming majority stated they are simply scared of the clientele.
Recruitment has now begun at smaller universities in hopes that the immediate job opportunity will appeal to the soon-to-be graduates. One graduating senior is thrilled to have been offered a position.
“I am really excited to use my degree to be able to help those who really need it. Plus it is just a 5-year contract, and as long as I stay, they will pay my student loans. So it will be worth it. Right?” Tyler Moore, a graduating senior who ranks last in his class murmured while nervously biting his nails.
When asked about the financial impact of this decision on the company, the CEO responded, “Weirdos love saving money, so it is our duty to offer them great low prices without compromising the well-being of our staff.”
Until the positions are filled and the offices opened, employees are urged to seek counseling with local therapists who have partnered up to offer their services at reduced rates.
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About the Author
Gina is a working mom, laughing at the absurd to keep herself from crying into a bag of cookies while pounding back coffee. Her writing has been featured on Sammiches & Psych Meds, Scary Mommy, Bon Bon Break, and Mamalode to name a few. You can laugh with or at her on Facebook or Twitter. Take a look, you’ll like what you see.