As employers, we have all been victim to rising health care expenditures. Due to the amount being spent, there is increasing interest in workplace-based health promotion and disease prevention as a means of improving health while lowering costs. As mentioned in the article “Workplace Wellness Programs Can Generate Savings”, a central component of the Healthcare Reform as highlighted by President Obama is DISEASE PREVENTION.
Approximately 60% of all Americans obtain health insurance coverage through an employer-based plan. Many of those employees spend the majority of their time at work. It only makes sense to incorporate wellness and disease prevention into the balance of everyday work life. There are many ways that employers could benefit from such programs.
We mentioned earlier that disease prevention is a main staple in the new Healthcare Reform Plan. Such programs may lead to reductions in healthcare costs, as well as healthcare premiums. There have been many case studies that proved positive returns. In some cases, for every dollar invested in the program, the employer saved more than the dollar spent.
Not only are savings a great incentive, but these types of programs also create a healthy work environment. One difference between a well employee and an un-well employee is their level of productivity. A healthy employee is more likely to be productive and efficient, thus increasing profits. Healthy employees also will miss fewer days of work, costing less in sick pay.
Employer-based wellness initiatives may not only improve health, but may result in substantial savings over the traditional healthcare platform. Plus, employees won’t have to take time off work, and their productivity won’t suffer from being sick in the office.
Reference: "Workplace Wellness Programs Can Generate Savings" By Baicker, Katherine, David Cutler, and Zirui Song