The Business Case for Wellness

Poor worker health is a substantial drain on your core business. It depletes money and diminishes productivity that should be devoted to your core business. It’s also a key driver of absenteeism and on-the-job accidents.

Unhealthy behaviors and conditions such as obesity, poor nutrition, lack of exercise, smoking, and stress are health inhibitors. They are key cost drivers of poor worker health.

The good news is that many of these conditions are modifiable or preventable. But they are only
preventable if employees decide to make a behavior change and if employees get the help they need to make those changes.

There is no greater benefit that you can give to your employees and their families than the benefit of wellness. But human nature being what it is, having benefits and tools available doesn’t always mean that people use them.

Reaching a state of minimum health costs and maximum productivity requires a commitment to creating a “Culture of Maximum Wellness” – not only giving your employees the tools to make change, but also giving them the education, encouragement and motivation they need to tackle their most pressing health issues and to eliminate or reduce health-inhibiting behaviors.

Wellness is good for you and good for your business

  • Wellness programs have demonstrated average reductions in worker health costs by 18% and up to 28% for older workers
  • Research points to an average of $3 for every $1 invested in improving workers’ health
  • Almost 66% of the increase in health care spending is driven by unhealthy lifestyle behaviors, such as poor diet, lack of exercise, smoking, and stress
  • Productivity losses related to personal and family health problems cost U.S. employers, on average, $225.8 billion annually, or $1,685 per employee per year
  • Every employee who quits smoking results in $3,400 per year in reduced long-term health cost and lost productivity.
  • Medical costs for people who are obese were $3,000 higher than those of normal weight.

Most importantly, wellness is good for your employees

  • 1 in 5 continue to smoke; smokers die an average of 10 years earlier than nonsmokers
  • Stress elevates the risk of a heart attack by 27%
  • High blood pressure is thought to contribute to 50% of all heart attacks and strokes
  • More than one-third of U.S. adults (35.7%) are obese
  • Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some of the leading causes of preventable death
  • Research shows that lack of exercise can be as lethal as smoking. Studies have linked as many as 10% of heart disease cases to inactivity