About Wellness Corporate Solutions

Monday, March 31, 2008

Do Employees Stick With Wellness Programs?

A new survey by life insurer Guardian looks at a key question often raised by doubters of corporate wellness programs: Do employees stick with the positive behavior changes a company's wellness program can produce?

While the press release suggests the answer is no, the reported facts are more interesting: About half of participants say their commitment to healthy behaviors trails off "after just a few years."
Actually, a few years of healthy habit change is pretty good, and likely to produce tangible benefits for employers such as reduced absenteeism and lower healthcare claims. And if half of participants trail off, that may mean the other half stick with their good habits longer. That looks like a glass half-full to me.
Other positive results from the Guardian phone survey of over 400 employed adults:
  • Sixty-eight percent of employees believe that incentives (cash, gifts, extra vacation days) will help them change behaviors
  • About the same number of participants say the programs are very effective in promoting good health.
  • Thirty percent were either current or past participants in a wellness program over the past three years.
  • Thirty-five percent of employees surveyed had access to a wellness program. About half of them were enrolled in the programs.
Guardian has several reports available on health benefit programs (though the one released today isn't among them yet).

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