EarlyRETURNS absence management delivers results

    Sun Life Financial announces dynamic new service for salary continuance

    TORONTO, April 13 /CNW/ - Sun Life Financial is pleased to introduce
EarlyRETURNS, an innovative suite of absence management services for plan
sponsors with salary continuance plans. EarlyRETURNS offers a unique and
flexible approach to absence management that combines Sun Life's
industry-leading case management with advisory services, a robust service
provider network, and absence prevention strategies.
    A 2007 Watson Wyatt Worldwide survey of leading providers showed that Sun
Life's short-term disability (STD) case management results are the best among
those surveyed as measured by absence duration - a key metric when it comes to
curbing costs.
    "Our customers are telling us that, in today's turbulent economy, they
need their employees to be healthy, productive and fully engaged if their
business is to succeed," said Dave Jones, Vice-President, Market Development,
Group Benefits, Sun Life Financial Canada. "At the same time, chronic illness,
mental health issues and unhealthy lifestyles are increasing the number and/or
duration of employee absences from work. Managing those absences is becoming
more complex for employers, especially in today's climate. EarlyRETURNS'
holistic case management provides the right care at the right time to ensure
that employees can return to health and to work quickly."
    In addition to case management, EarlyRETURNS offers four complementary
services to help tackle specific absence challenges:

    -   Return-to-Work Advisory Services allow plan sponsors who prefer to
        handle their own case management to consult with Sun Life experts on
        how best to return employees to work quickly and safely;
    -   Service Provider Express gives plan sponsors access to Sun Life's
        national network of health professionals who are specialists in their
        field. Chosen for their complementary philosophy, skills, and
        experience, they help Sun Life extend its reach to meet virtually any
        plan member's needs;
    -   Chronic Casual Absence Services assess situations involving high
        rates of chronic, cyclical or patterned absenteeism (where the plan
        member has not met the STD waiting period, and where plan member has
        identified that there is a health element);
    -   Absence Prevention Strategies help tackle organizational issues that
        may be driving absenteeism.

    Services are modular, so plan sponsors can choose the services that meet
their specific needs.
    There is abundant research that shows the tie between unhealthy
employees, unhealthy workplaces, and increased disability absences. The same
research shows that healthy work environments and healthy employees correlate
to reduced absenteeism, improved productivity and customer satisfaction.
    "It's very clear that a healthier workplace and workforce will have fewer
absences," said Jones. "What's unique about EarlyRETURNS is that we not only
help plan sponsors bring employees back to work sooner, we also help them
prevent absences in the first place by identifying and addressing the drivers
of absenteeism in their organizations. EarlyRETURNS is about early results. We
can prove it."

    About Sun Life Financial

    Sun Life Financial is a leading international financial services
organization providing a diverse range of protection and wealth accumulation
products and services to individuals and corporate customers. Chartered in
1865, Sun Life Financial and its partners today have operations in key markets
worldwide, including Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland,
Hong Kong, the Philippines, Japan, Indonesia, India, China and Bermuda. As of
December 31, 2008, the Sun Life Financial group of companies had total assets
under management of CDN$381 billion.
    Sun Life Financial Inc. trades on the Toronto (TSX), New York (NYSE) and
Philippine (PSE) stock exchanges under ticker symbol SLF.

For further information:

For further information: Krista Wilson, Manager, Corporate
Communications, Sun Life Financial Canada, (519) 888-3900 x4896,

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