How would you like to motivate employees to achieve better health—saving your company money? Help decrease absenteeism, sick time, and injury-increasing productivity? Show employees that management cares?
Recent studies by such prestigious consulting firms such as Hewitt Associates and Providers of Health Promotion Programs believe quality health and wellness programs can meet those objectives.
A recent Hewitt study found 92 percent of U.S. companies currently offer some kind of health promotion program, up from 88 percent in 1995.
The study found that due to "increased cost pressures, employers are looking for creative and effective solutions, such as health promotion and medical management programs, that can provide cost savings, reduce absenteeism and increase productivity.
"Organizations will continue to offer health programs in an effort to contain skyrocketing health care costs and enhance employees’ health."
Health programs range from seminars and workshops to counseling for lifestyle habits that contribute to chronic or acute conditions.
Here are some of the most often used elements in companies across the country:
- Financial incentive and disincentive programs.
- Health risk appraisals (questionnaires) to analyze an employees’ health history and promote early detection of preventable health conditions.
- Health screenings to detect high blood pressure or cholesterol through their health plans or via on-site health fairs, mobile units for mammography or other screenings.
- Disease and medical management, flu vaccinations, well-baby/child care, and prenatal care.
- Professionally prepared newsletters.
Almost everyone is predicting large increases in health care cost over the next few years.
Some of these health promotion programs may help an organization spend less over the long run. IBI