Wellness Wednesdays: CDC cites benefits to workplace health programs

People at Work 335(CDC.gov) – Workplace health programs have many potential benefits for both employers and employees

A workplace health program that combines both individual and organizational strategies may produce benefits both for individual employees and their families as well as the organization as a whole.

How employees can benefit

For employees, the maintenance of individual health is often seen as a difficult challenge amidst competing demands of the work day, family responsibility, and other social obligations. However, adopting healthy behaviors not only reduces risk for developing disabling or life threatening diseases and their associated costs, but improves everyday quality of life. Comprehensive programs that address individual health behaviors as well as health and safety risks from the work environment also reduce disease and injury risk. Participation in health promotion activities through a workplace health program allows individuals to develop knowledge, self-management and coping skills as well as build a social support network among coworkers, supervisors, and family. Employees often see a comprehensive workplace health program as an investment made by their company for their well-being and a reflection of how much the company cares about its employees which may impact job satisfaction and morale.

How employers can benefit

Employers can benefit from workplace health programs through enhanced productivity, decreased employee absenteeism, and lower insurance and workers compensation costs. Employers who implement a comprehensive set of strategies to address employee health and safety including policy and environmental strategies benefit by having the ability to reach most if not all employees at the worksite simultaneously. These strategies help create a culture of health and make the healthy choice the easy choice for employees and can reduce an employer’s reliance on individual participation in employer-sponsored programs. (read more)

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