Unhealthy Behavior Costs $623 per Employee
The unhealthy behaviors of the U.S. workforce now cost employers an average of $623 per employee annually, according to the Thomson Reuters Workforce Wellness Index.
The index gauges six behavioral risk factors to track the collective health of working Americans with employer-sponsored health insurance: and the costs associated with less-than-optimal health.
An index score of 100 represents the ideal situation, where there are no behavioral risk factors in the population and no associated healthcare costs. From 2005 to 2010, the index declined from 85.8 to 84.7: indicating the health status of the U.S. workforce is deteriorating.
This decline: as measured by body mass index, blood pressure, cholesterol, blood glucose, tobacco use, and alcohol use: contributes to rising healthcare costs and reduced productivity for U.S. employers.
In 2010, about 14% of direct healthcare costs for the employed, privately insured population were directly associated with those six behavioral risk factors, amounting to $623 per employee. Of that, $425 can be attributed to high body mass index, a $25 increase over 2009. Elevated blood glucose was the second most significant factor, accounting for nearly $125 per employee per year.
See the complete report for more information.
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