Healthy employees are the backbone of a successful organisation. But delayed care and rising healthcare costs are significant for organisations, so balancing the two is essential.
As we recognise the 15th Employee Wellbeing Month at Virgin Pulse, HR professionals must foster a culture of health and wellness that includes preventative care. Because the reality is that preventative care keeps healthcare costs at bay and keeps people healthier.
You can inspire your people to put their health and wellbeing first. While the specifics of this encouragement may vary across the Globe, the guiding principle remains the same: your people should always be the cornerstone of your support programme.
Here is a comprehensive health checklist to help support your employees with preventative care plans that keep them healthy and help you curb rising healthcare costs.
Promote Annual Check-ups: Encourage employees to schedule annual check-ups with their primary care doctor. With health, preventative care is cheaper and more effective than reactive care. These check-ups can detect potential health issues early and prevent serious, more costly complications.
It’s important to recognise that a medical condition or complaint, no matter how small, can cause anxiety and influence productivity and the ability to carry out day-to-day activities at work.
Ideas💡 Partner with healthcare providers to offer on-site health fairs or clinics to make it convenient for employees and normalise regular check-ups. Further, you could implement policies that allow paid time off for preventative care visits.
Advocate Regular Screenings: Raise awareness of the importance of regular health screenings. Cancer is now the top cost and healthcare trend driver. From mammograms to colonoscopies, these tests are crucial for early detection of diseases.
Ideas 💡 consider offering flexible scheduling or additional time off for employees to attend these screenings. You could negotiate with insurance providers to cover these screenings as part of the company health plan or offer a wellness programme with a screening component.
Emphasise Eye and Dental Exams: Eyes and teeth are often overlooked, but these exams can catch diseases like glaucoma, diabetes, oral cancer, and gum disease early.
Ideas 💡 ensure that the company’s health insurance covers dental and vision care. If not already in place, consider adding these as optional benefits. Providing information about your benefits, access to quality healthcare with confidence and cost clarity, or arranging on-site visits from optometrists or dental hygienists can also be beneficial.
Support Vaccinations: Ensure employees stay up to date with their vaccinations. Provide resources and reminders for seasonal vaccines and essential immunisations.
Ideas 💡 Hold vaccination drives for flu shots or other relevant vaccines at the workplace, especially amid a pandemic. Also, offering an online portal or app that sends education about vaccines and reminders about vaccination schedules can help keep employees informed.
Champion Mental Health: Foster an environment where mental health is a priority. Encourage regular check-ins with mental health professionals and offer support for managing stress, anxiety, and other mental health issues.
Ideas 💡 Organise regular workshops or talks on mental health, creating an open dialogue around the subject. Consider providing resources like an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) that includes mental health services or partnering with a digital mental health platform. Encourage mental health days and promote a work culture emphasising work-life balance to reduce stress.
Cultivating a health-conscious culture is a continuous process. As an HR professional, your role in promoting preventative care and regular health checks is crucial for keeping your people healthy and your costs down. With Employee Wellbeing Month as our inspiration, let’s commit to supporting our employees in their health journey.
Virgin Pulse is dedicated to making wellbeing a priority. Let’s use this opportunity to promote a healthier and happier workplace.