Wellness programs lead to healthy behavioral changes amongst employees
By Omri Kleinberger - Mar 30 2020
LWellness programs are at their core about bringing on behavioral change. When people are encouraged and supported, provided with the opportunity and the motive, people can change behavioral patterns and habits. This is what Wellness programs are really about, and perhaps their greatest benefit.
With healthy behavior, you can expect lower health risks, and those lead to less chronic illnesses, which leads to leads health care expenditure.
There have been comprehensive studies about the potential in wellness programs to help instill healthy habits, and those who measured behavioral change, show real results. Here is data from a recently published article, in which almost 2000 employees participated in for two years:
Source: Population Health Management article
One key understanding of acquiring and keeping healthy habits is that the benefits are there are long as you are keeping them up. Once you stop, the benefits stop as well. What shows with programs that go on for at least two years is that the benefits are real and traceable over that time. When you work on having good habits in place consistently, they are easier to maintain, and you are likely to keep them in the future
The behavioral changes we look for have to do with portion control, better food consumption, less smoking and drinking, staying active, and stress control. It has also been shown to help with depression and increase overall happiness.
The AHA, the American Heart Association has researched the effectiveness of wellness programs in reducing cardiovascular risk and better overall health.
In 2013 analysts conducted the most extensive research to date named the Rand Report, and at in it’s conclusion they found that:
"Workplace wellness programs can help contain the current epidemic of lifestyle-related diseases, the main driver of premature morbidity and mortality as well as health care cost in the United States."
Soeren Mattke, Lead Author of the Rand Report