Optimizing your health benefits

There are many factors that contribute to a healthy and productive workplace. Employee benefit programs promote wellness and encourage a healthy work-life balance. Health plan benefits that include access to innovative medicines keep employees at work and productive. There’s an abundance of evidence demonstrating that healthy employees are more productive and call in sick less often. By providing access to the right treatment at the right time, workplaces can reduce absenteeism, avoid disability claims, and reduce presenteeism – employees who may be physically at work but their minds may be elsewhere.

Employers who focus on employee health can also reduce costs associated with missed deadlines, recruiting replacement workers, overtime pay, and training new staff.

An integrated approach for a healthy workplace

Understanding the role of chronic disease and mental health is essential to a healthy workplace. Today’s employers are looking for an integrated approach that places priority on promoting healthy lifestyle changes such as better nutrition and exercise and addressing addiction and mental illness.

Chronic disease, poor mental health and poor medication adherence can affect the workplace and increase healthcare and productivity costs.

  • Chronic diseases are the number one problem in the workplace. There is a positive return on investment for wellness programs that try to address chronic disease in the workplace through prevention. (Sources: Greenshield, Sunlife)
  • Mental disorders are responsible for more lost working days than physical conditions. Indirect costs related to mental illness (costs associated with disability claims, lost productivity at school and work due to absenteeism and presenteeism, and social and judicial services) in Canada exceed direct costs (hospital care, physician and drug expenditures = $8 billion) and range from $11 to $50 billion. (Source: CCDSS)
  • Studies conducted also point to the higher costs and poorer health outcomes associated with not taking medications as prescribed and the savings that result from improved compliance. (Source: Conference Board of Canada)

As a result, insurers and employers are smart to initiate programs to improve medication adherence and promote a healthy lifestyle by focusing on prevention.