On-site Clinics Can Improve Worker Health, Wellness

May 20, 2014

Controlling workers compensation insurance costs is on the minds of executives across all types of industries, including health care, construction and manufacturing. High-risk and taxing professions can place a significant strain on the health and wellness of employees, and creative strategies may be needed to mitigate this problem.

These can range from financial incentives to reduce unhealthy behavior to wellness programs that provide clear guidelines on the road to success. However, another method - the on-site wellness clinic - has been gaining popularity among employers across the U.S.

All-in-one stop for worker health
For employers today, rising workers comp insurance costs can be related to out-of-shape workers and dangerous habits and working conditions. Therefore, it is imperative to find ways to limit these risks and promote a more productive atmosphere at the workplace.

One way to do that has been with an on-site health care clinic, according to Business Insurance. Once, these facilities were designed to deal with acute care needs, but now they have become an all-in-one service center for employees.

These clinics are "a total population health management solution, not only treating acute conditions but also providing disease management and wellness, tobacco cessation and group support," Paula Andersen, director of Buck Consultants L.L.C.'s national clinical practice in Cincinnati, told the news source. "It also might include dental, pediatric care, physical therapy, radiology and pharmacy. The clinics are becoming more of a one-stop shop."

Clinics often charge a per-employee monthly fee, on par with a gym membership. As a result, they could be ideal solutions for companies, and their prominence has grown in recent memory.

A proactive approach can help
Above all else, employers should take workplace health and wellness seriously. A quality risk management plan should take this into consideration, and there are also other strategies that could provide results.

According to AARP, wellness programs have been extremely beneficial for employers in all sorts of industries. These initiatives can cover health risk appraisals, flu shots, weight management and stress reduction, among other aspects. Today, more organizations are offering services geared toward mental health issues also, in addition to the traditional major illnesses, such as diabetes and heart disease. 

One of the reasons why these strategies are so popular is because of the cost savings, AARP noted. There is a correlation between the frequency that employees partake in these services and the reduction in visits to more expensive health care options. As a result, companies save more money, and see their staff healthy, happy and at work.

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