Connecting Health and Wealth to Drive Successful Wellness Programs

Seventy percent of companies currently offer some form of wellness program. This reflects the desire to keep employees healthy and lower medical-related expenses. (click here) Unfortunately, survey data shows that many employees do not understand the positive financial impact of these programs, making them less likely to adopt the small and simple behavioral changes necessary to accurately impact their health and medical-related expenses.

Financial Wellness and Your Employees

Studies show that financial wellness is among the top concerns for employees in the workplace (click here). However, today’s wellness programs often lack the connection between physical health and financial health which shows employees the direct connection between their health and health-related costs.

Fortunately, a new data-driven approach can show employees how much money they can save annually on healthcare costs just by making small and modest changes – and while employees can save an average of $1600 per year, employers stand to save, on average, three times that much, as their employees through reduced premiums, fewer sick calls, and a happier, more productive workforce.

Improved Health, Maximized Savings

Think of it as portion control. It’s the idea that a small change in diet can have a large impact on an individual’s health and savings.

Dave is a 55-year old man with high blood pressure. He can increase his life expectancy by over two years, and save an average of $2,500 each year by limiting salt intake (not putting extra salt on his meals), reducing alcohol consumption (from daily to 5 days per week), and taking short walks throughout the week.

*The savings are a direct result of decreased out-of-pocket health care spending due to improved health.*

Sally is a 45-year-old female with type 2 diabetes. She can increase her life expectancy by almost ten years and reduce her out-of-pocket healthcare expenses by $3,500 by simply following a diabetic diet,  taking the stairs rather than the elevator, and taking medications as prescribed (more than 50% of people stop taking their medication as prescribed after only 6 months).*

*These totals are based on actuarial claims data.

How HealthyCapital Can Help You and Your Company

Approximately fifty percent of America’s current workforce has one or more chronic conditions. The conditions include type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, and tobacco use; and due to their prevalence, many people can significantly improve their health by making small and easy modifications (such as taking medication as prescribed)

Many people forget the connection between healthy living and saving money. Integrating cost-savings data into company wellness programs will furnish workers with a meaningful incentive to create simple behavioral alterations. And in turn, they may increase life expectancy, reduce medical expenses, and gain disposable income – as Dave and Sally did.

What’s in it for employers?

  • Dave (who saved $2,500)
    • the employer saves $7,500 annually
  • Sally (who saved $3,500)
    •  the employer sees costs reduced by $10,500 each year.

As shown above, companies with successful wellness initiatives can save as much as $3 for every $1 in reduced employee expenses and when these numbers are scaled to the entire employee population, these savings make a big difference to the bottom line.