A few decades ago, workplace wellness programs were just about getting people to stop smoking. Now they have evolved into comprehensive programs with assessments, coaches and friendly competitions with big prizes. Studies have shown these programs are worth implementing.
To help smaller businesses who cannot afford implementing wellness programs, the health care reform law included a $200 million federal grant to help cover the cost.
What does a wellness program look like today? How do companies measure success to ensure a mutually beneficial program?
We wanted to talk more about this topic after reading a story about wellness incentives in The Wall Street Journal:
A growing number of workplace programs are borrowing techniques from digital games in an effort to encourage regular exercise and foster healthy eating habits. The idea is that competitive drive--sparked by online leader boards, peer pressure, digital rewards and real-world prizes--can get people to improve their overall health...
A survey of employers released in March by the consulting firm Towers Watson and the National Business Group on Health found that about 9% expected to use online games in their wellness programs by the end of this year, with another 7% planning to add them in 2013. By the end of next year, 60% said their health initiatives would include online games as well as other types of competitions between business locations or employee groups.
Ron Goetzel, director of the Institute for Health and Productivity Research at Emory University, will join The Daily Circuit Thursday to talk about workplace programs to motivate employees to live healthy lives. Dr. Don Powell, president of American Institute for Preventive Medicine, will also join the discussion.
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