Wellness Programs Can Help Small Employers Save Money: Study

from Spencer’s Benefits Reports: While most small businesses do not offer health and wellness programs to their employees, three out of four that do offer a wellness programs have found that the program has had a positive impact on their bottom line, according to a recent report from Humana and the National Small Business Association. The study, Workplace Wellness Programs in Small Businesses: Impacting the Bottom Line, also noted that 93 percent of small employers consider their employees’ physical and mental health to be important to their financial results, but only one-third express confidence in their ability to help employees manage their well-being.

The study defined health and wellness programs as initiatives aimed at encouraging employees to make healthier choices such as getting preventative care, eating right and exercising. More than half of surveyed firms said that insufficient information is available that pertains to small businesses introducing health and wellness programs. However, the study found that startups—those companies that are less than ten years old—are leading the way with 31 percent having already adopted health and wellness programs. In addition, 65 percent of startups say wellness programs are worth the investment and 31 percent are already adopting such programs. Nearly half of startups say these programs aid in recruiting and retaining employees.

“For 50 years, five behavioral issues have consumed an estimated 80 percent of the nation’s health care budget—poor diet, stress coupled with inactivity, smoking, and drinking. Humana understands small businesses’ role in supporting our economy and we are committed to helping these employers and their employees combat such issues and achieve lifelong well-being,” said Jerry Ganoni, president of Humana’s small business division.

The study includes responses from more than 1,000 small business owners. For more information, visit http://www.nsba.biz.

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