What’s Wellness Got To Do With It?
As many of you have probably noticed, wellness is a pretty hot topic right now. It’s been sprinkled throughout the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and all over the news. But, I’m sure you’re all wondering, what does wellness really have to do with the cost of health care?
Some reasons are pretty obvious. We all get that healthy people need less healthcare. But, I think what’s really surprising to most people are the facts and stats around the correlation between wellness and health care costs.
Did you know?
- 70% of illnesses and associated costs are preventable
- 1 Million deaths are due in large part to preventable causes each year
- 1 in 3 U.S. adults are considered obese
Figures like these contribute to the reason why our country spends more dollars on health care than any other country in the world. We know that the future of cost containment will need to dramatically shift focus from merely treating sickness to preventing sickness in the first place.
According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, about $0.95 of every dollar we spend on healthcare in the United States is spent on treatment, and only $.05 on prevention. We have an opportunity to bend the curve and provide our employees and their families with the necessary tools & resources to prevent many of these chronic conditions.
The cost containment of wellness extends far beyond the cost of healthcare. Many employers see a huge return on their wellness investment through:
- Decreased absenteeism
- Improved productivity
- Reduced workers’ compensation injuries
- Happier, healthier employees
- Improved morale
- Enhanced recruiting and retaining efforts
You can impact your bottom line with an effective, carefully planned out wellness program. Yes, it will take time. Yes, it will take commitment. Yes, it will require an investment. But the benefits are HUGE. We can no longer afford to wait for people to get sick. If we keep doing what we’re doing, nothing will improve.
Let’s make a change! Who’s with me?!
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