According to a study from Fidelity and the National Business Group on Health released last week, 73% of companies are using incentives to motivate their employees to live a healthy lifestyle. The average value of the incentives has also increased to $460, up from an average of $430 in 2010 and $260 in 2009. The study showed employers using different types of incentives, including gift cards, and showing that the programs were more effective than employers expected.
Not only is health and wellness program usage on the rise, more and more companies are requiring employees to participate. In 2011, 5% of companies required their employees to participate in health testing (e.g., cholesterol screening) or ricks being excluded from coverage. That number is expected to nearly double in 2012 to 9%. 7% of companies required completion of a health-risk assessment last year. In 2012, 10% of companies will require it. These numbers prove how important employee health is both for the good of the employee and for the health care budget of the employer. How is your company changing their health and wellness policies?