What is “Corporate Wellness?”
Corporate wellness is the integration of preventative health services into the workplace. It can include health fairs with preventative medical screenings, lunch-and-learn presentations by health professionals, health coaching, and behavior change challenges.
Why the workplace?
Current research shows that every $1 spent on a corporate wellness program saves employers an average of $6 in health care costs and regained productivity. According to the Texas Commissioner of State Health Services, “The link between employee wellness and the bottom line is clear and consistent. Employers who integrate wellness in their overall objectives find they experience reduced absences, better morale, reduced health risks, and reduced health-care costs.” Employee health care costs are on the rise. Currently, employers spend an average of $5000 each year per employee on health care costs. Less than 5% of those costs go to preventative care. Now is the time for companies to invest in a corporate wellness program for their employees.
A Few Success stories
- Johnson & Johnson claims to have saved $38 million in health-care costs for its employees between 1995 and 1999 by promoting healthy lifestyles. Medical expenses decreased $224 per employee per year (averaged over four years), and this rate improved over time.
- The City of Fort Worth implemented a corporate wellness program for its employees that decreased the number of employees considered “high-risk” from 56% to 22% in 3 years. Their program offers a variety of free wellness and health-promotion services including lunch seminars, disease management programs, walking groups, and monetary incentives for participating in health screening fairs.
I recommend worksite wellness programs follow a Health at Every Size approach.
For more information on corporate wellness, check out any of these resources: