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Health/Wellness Coaching is now producing outstanding financial benefits for the companies that use it. Every $1 they spend on the programs, they save $2. It’s now endorsed by companies like Motorola, AutoNation, Blue Cross, Humana and institutions of all sizes.
More employers are offering cash, discounts and even lower health-insurance premiums to entice workers to participate in a variety of programs. And starting next year, employees could have further incentive to get healthy as more companies add penalties to insurance premiums for workers who don’t partake.
Despite cutbacks amid the recession, 58% of large U.S. companies now offer lifestyle-improvement programs, up from 43% in 2007, according to a Watson Wyatt study. And 56% provide health coaches, compared with 44% in 2007. Health-risk appraisals are offered at 80% of companies, up from 72% in 2007.
Companies have a long-term incentive to offer programs — and get workers to participate. It takes about two to five years for businesses to see the benefit, but for every $1 they spend on the programs, they save $2, according to Kathy Harte, co-leader of the health and clinical consulting practice at consulting firm Hewitt Associates.
In some cases, the savings could be even higher.
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