Implementing Workplace Wellness Programs that get Results

Implementing Workplace Wellness
Programs that get Results
September 12, 2013
Presented by
Bev Losey, CLU
Today’s Topics
• Why Workplace Wellness – The Issues
• “How-to” in Workplace Wellness
• Examples of Workplace Wellness Committee Work
• Who are the Players
• Workplace Wellness integration
Workplace Wellness is “an organized, employer –
sponsored program that is designed to support
employees (and sometimes, their families) as they
adopt and sustain behaviors that reduce health
risks, improve quality of life, enhance personal
effectiveness, and benefit the organization’s
bottom line.”
Harvard Business Review
What factors influence a decision to implement a
workplace wellness program?
Source: Zywave 2012 Wellness Benefits Survey.
Health Care and Its Costs
• PwC projects average health care cost increase of 7.5% in 2013: more than three times
US inflation and economic growth
• Obesity costs $1429 per year according to National Health Institute (structural impact)
• Smoking was next highest cost driver; Responsible for 1 in 5 deaths annually; $193B
costs in lost productivity and $96B in healthcare costs per Wellnet/Limeade
• Stress at work – affects likelihood of heart attack according to University College
• Gail Christopher, Ph.d. , September 10, 2012 annual National Benefits Expo –
unhealthy weight gain = adipose tissue = higher risk of 37 different chronic conditions
• Recent Kellogg Foundation study reported:
1) Area of brain tissue that controls stress shrinks with high blood sugar
2) High blood pressure can lead to actual loss of brain tissue
• Sitting at a desk all day = 1 1/2 packs of cigarettes per Kellogg Foundation
• Obesity cost calculator from CDC;
Health Care and Its Costs
• Unhealthy workers’ absenteeism cost
employers more than $153 billion in lost
productivity every year.*
• Every day an employee calls in sick, it cost
the average employer $341 per missed day.
• 38% of all absences are related to health
* Source: Callup-Healthways Well-Being Index 2011.
** Source: Ann Hewitt – Senior VP of national absence
management consulting practice leader, 2013.
Workplace Wellness ROI
• Sept 15 Case Study – AMSEC; since May 2009, Weight Watchers at Work
– 68 lost 2000 pounds and reported more energy, more stamina and reduced meds
• Recent Texas A&M study reports ROI as high as 6:1
• American Journal of Health Promotion (AJHP) reports
• 27% reduction in sick leave absenteeism
• 26% reduction in health costs
• 32% decrease in workers compensation and disability claims
• Chief Medical Officer for Thomson Reuters –says Companies who focus in health have
better stock prices, out performed the DOW Jones over five years
• Compare a Flu shot cost against average ER visit of $1500 (September, per CDC)
• Chrysler’s “We Got Your Back” program – 100 participants shown muscle relaxation
techniques etc., 55% pain free vs. 100 Beta’s only 5% pain free with Physical Therapy
• Mercer national survey found 2% less cost increases, on average with health emphasis
• AJHP – reports on results with 20,000 participants 2.45:1 over 3 years
• Metlife/Hyatt Legal report 43% of employees who did not hire an attorney for help said
physical and emotional health negatively affected
Workplace Wellness ROI
The Return on Investment (ROI) is clear. ROI for implementing health improvement
programs is an average of $5.50 savings in absenteeism and medical costs.
These eight MODIFIABLE behaviors cause these 15 conditions which drive 80% of
the chronic illness costs:
Modifiable Behaviors
1. Smoking
2. Physical inactivity
3. Poor diet
4. Poor standard of care compliance
5. Insufficient sleep
6. Lack of health screening
Source: The World Economic forum :
The New Discipline of Workforce Wellness.
Enhancing Corporate Performance by Tackling
Chronic Disease” 2010.
1. Diabetes
2. Coronary artery disease
3. Hypertension
4. Dyslipidemia
5. Obesity
6. Asthma
7. Arthritis
8. Sinutitus
9. Heart failure
10. COPD
11. Chronic kidney disease
12. Depression
13. Back pain
Workplace Wellness ROI
• Not Immediate – Year 1: Diagnosis and Treatment Plan
Year 2: Awareness and Change
Year 3: Improving Outcomes
• Need a healthy dose of reality and set the expectation that there is no
instant cure
• Avoid Common Wellness Program Pitfalls:
• Checking the box
• Using a “Scarlet Letter” strategy
• Taking a “Robots R Us” approach
• Trying for a quick fix
• Doing nothing
Workplace Wellness Roadmap
7 Best Practices for Building a Wellness Program
1. Get senior level support. Successful wellness programs start at the top.
2. Form a wellness team. Creating a culture of health takes passionate leadership from all
levels of the organization.
3. Use data to drive wellness initiatives. Employers often struggle with what wellness
initiatives have to offer. A survey, assessment checklist, and health risk appraisal
approach guides employers where to focus your efforts.
4. No program is successful without a plan. Develop an annual workplace wellness
operating plan, starting with a vision statement.
5. Choose appropriate health initiatives. Collecting data will help you decide what wellness
initiatives to promote. Note a variety of lower cost resources and activities exist.
6. Create a corporate environment that supports wellness. Support a culture of health, from
top to bottom and bottom to top.
7. Evaluate the outcome of workplace wellness initiatives. Determine what works and what
doesn’t so you can plan for the next year.
Workplace Wellness
• General Resources
• Wellness Vendors
• Wellness Apps
Workplace Wellness
• Instant Recess; Tool kit at
• Nap pods – is nap time next?
• – monitors posture for back pain
• – to navigate the healthcare system
• – San Francisco pilot
• – nutrition team challenges
• – health game integrated with Facebook
• – movement tracking device
Instant Recess
Who are the Players?
• C- Suite; Senior leadership
• Wellness committee/team; all employees
• Legal considerations
• Community
• Insurers
• Broker/Consultant
• Wellness vendors
Gaining Senior Leadership
• A commitment from the top is critical to the success of any wellness
• Management must understand the benefits of the program for both the
employees and the organization
• Be willing to commit sufficient funding and/or time
• Link health promotion to business goals, values and strategic priorities
• Emphasize improved employee productivity and health care cost savings
Management’s attitude towards wellness falls into one of five categories:
• Active Opposition
• Quiet Opposition
• Neutral
• Quiet Supporters
• Wellness Champions
Developing a Wellness
• Formally appoint team members and a leader
• Promote the wellness team within the organization
• Include employees from all levels and areas of the organization
• If multi-location, name a Wellness Champion per worksite
• Meet on a regular schedule with a formal agenda
• Communication is the key
Find Your Wellness
Breathing Energy into
a Wellness Team
Recruit the CEO or another influential executive to sit in on a wellness meeting
A team name, vision and tagline provide a sense of identity and motivation
Continually recruit new team members who are natural leaders
Share the stories of employees who have experienced successful individual
Assess the individual strengths of each team member
Set goals for the team to achieve
Publishing a team newsletter creates a sense of pride and outlines the efforts of
the wellness initiatives
Take the team on a retreat as a way of regrouping and recharging their energy
Continue wellness education by bringing in outside resources
Legal Considerations
ADA – Americans with Disabilities Act; safe harbor
HIPAA – 20% of total premium as margin; no PHI to group
DOL – nondiscrimination regulations
EPL – Employment Practices Liability; not for hiring, retention,
performance evaluations, and promotions
• ERISA and COBRA – Stand alone program to be “valued” for COBRA
• PPACA – 30% in 2014; 50% for tobacco; small business grants
• PPACA – Final regulations issued May 29, 2013
• Participating programs
• Activities only programs
• Outcome-based programs
• Uniform availability and reasonable alternatives
Community Events and Learning
Art and Science of Health Promotion Conference (March 24 - 28, 2014)
SHRM: Health Benefit Strategy; leveraging Data, Design and Wellness – June 22 – 25, 2014
Mid-Sized Retirement & Healthcare Plan Management Conference; September 15 – 18, 2013
Wellness in the Workplace conference; September 11, 2013
IF Annual Employee Conference; October 20 – 23, 2013
Health 2.0; September 29, 2013
Heart & Stroke Walks; October 5, 2013 (South Sound) and October 26, 2013 (Puget Sound)
Be Well Washington; A Family Health Week Fair; October 12, 2013
Healthy Worksite Summit; Washington State Department of Health (Lynnwood);
October 2 – 3, 2013
National Eating Healthy Day; November 6, 2013
Local Public Health Departments
Local Chapters: AHA, ACS, ADA, COPD, SHRM
Health Fair resources: nutritionists, YMCA, insurers, massage therapists, dentists; flu shots
(RiteAid - $29.99)
Health Care System materials;
Broker/Consultant materials and guidance
Workplace Integration
• Activities committee
• Safety committee
• Community Involvement committee
• Communications
• Insurance/Benefits plans
Insurance/Benefits Plans
• Health Plans
• Primary Care Carveout
• Onsite/Near site clinics
• CDHP’s
• Preventive Care
• Flu shots
• Health Risk Assessment/Biometrics
• Fitness Networks/Discounts
• Dental plan
• Employee Assistance Plan
• 401(K), retirement plan; life plan
• STD/Sick leave/PTO/LTD plan
Wellness dollars
Monetary rewards
Achievement awards
Public recognition
Time Off
Premium Reductions
Health risk assessments
Participation (variations)
Individual achievements
Smoking cessation classes
• Multiple behaviors
• Invite family members
Trend: Looking to Incent Outcomes/Results versus Behaviors.
Ten Motivational Styles
Find the leadership mode that will
best inspire each employee:
Goal setter
Fun follower
Social connector
Reward earner
Active learner
Purpose seeker
Structure seeker
Source: The Healthiest You Program
Remember to appeal to a variety of generations, ethnicities,
Socioeconomic and education levels, and gender; i.e. customization works.
Sample Communications Campaigns
Employee Retirement Campaign
Family Health Series Campaign
Health Costs Employee Education Campaign
National Health Observance Calendar Campaign
Live Well, Work Well Monthly Newsletter Campaign
Prevention Newsletter Campaign
Seasonal Campaign
Wellness Program Campaign
Communication “Do’s”
Make it entertaining and create some buzz
Appeal to what’s important to employees
Make it easy
Make me feel part of a community
Branded with an annual theme
Customizing to the Individual
Bev as Example:
B & B Incentive for HRA completion (prior year for biometrics)
BCBS of Florida – My Personal Wellness Portal
B & B Employee Assistance Plan
B-Fit! Wellness Activities
National Healthy Worksite Program for B & B – Tacoma
South Beach Daily Diet Newsletter; Word for the Day
Fit Bit – Weekly Reports
YMCA Membership
Farmers Market – fresh produce weekly
Island walks
Bubble baths
Joy Journal
Massages (when I can get ‘em)
“To stumble is not to fall but to
move forward faster.”
-African Proverb

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