This paper looks at the development and operations of corporate wellness programs. Since employees typically spend eight or more hours a day in the office, employers can leverage that time to promote better health. Worksite wellness programs can reduce health care spending by promoting healthy behaviors that reduce health risks in high-risk individuals and keep low-risk people healthy. Programs vary in scope, depending on an organization’s size. This paper concludes that an appropriately designed and administered wellness program is an excellent way for companies to show employees that they care while improving the overall physical and mental health of the organization.
Designing and establishing a wellness program involves several steps and decisions. Securing the support of top management is essential. Any meaningful change must come from the top. The executive team should define the goals of the program. For many organizations, this could mean reducing health care cost. Maybe there is high absenteeism or perhaps the company’s current culture encourages unhealthy behavior.
The next step is to decide on a level of intensity for the program. A clear statement of corporate philosophy in health and wellness is very important. If high productivity is most important, then a wellness program might seek to address absenteeism first, by starting with safety education, stress management, or chronic disease management. If company philosophy emphasizes loyalty and retention, then programs that offer long-term lifestyle education for employees and their families might work best. T...
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...ams for employees can reduce health care costs and be a huge benefit to workers, but only if people actually take part.
Aldana, S.G. Financial Impact of Health Promotion Programs: Comprehensive Review of the Literature. American Journal of Health Promotion, 2001,15:296-319
Kossek, E.E., Ozeki, C., Kosier, D.W. (2001) Wellness Incentives: Lessons Learned About Organizational Change. Human Resource Planning, 24,4.
Pelletier, K.R. (2001) A Review and Analysis of the Health and Cost-effective Outcome Studies of Comprehensive Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Programs at the Worksite: 1998-2000 Update. American Journal of Health Promotion,16(2):Nov/Dec 2001.
Potempa, Allison and Ritter, Steve (2007). Designing an Effective Wellness Program, Step by Step. Retrieved October 29, 2007 from http://www.shrm.org/rewards/library_published/benefits.
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