Article: Rewards Special: Employees' Wellness

Compensation & Benefits

Rewards Special: Employees' Wellness

Dr. Sumit Dutta MD, Vice President and General Manager – Quest Diagnostics

Studies have shown that health problems increase healthcare costs by as much as 25 percent. Employee illness has an adverse impact on the productivity, which eventually impacts a company’s bottom-line. As a result, identifying health risks becomes important for companies to consider. Workplace wellness activities are already a well established practice in the west.

The issue for Indian companies is more critical. India has the world’s highest number of diabetics. Cardiovascular disease is already the number one killer in India and the number of people with heart disease is projected to double in the next 20 years. Quest Diagnostic’s internal study in corporations across India, reveals that one out of two employees are at risk of cardiac disease and close to one in three employees are at risk of diabetes. Importantly, almost 30 percent people are not aware of their diabetic status.

Wellness programs also have a positive impact on employee motivation and engagement. Organizations that show they value their workers are more likely to attract, retain and motivate employees. It is one of the most important tools that HR managers have, to meaningfully demonstrate to the employees that they are valued.

In the coming year, we expect organizations to better understand the risks of chronic diseases and how they adversely impact employees. Indian companies will take proactive steps to reduce the disease burden on their employees. They will include annual health check-ups as part of non-cash components of their CTCs.

Organizations that take proactive steps towards employee wellness and engage workers in the early detection of lifestyle related diseases are at the leading edge of best practices. In the United States, the insurance company Allstate has opened a medical facility for employers and their families, where they can receive medical care and obtain information that encourages wellness. In India, progressive companies are taking the next steps and organizing workplace wellness seminars, dietician consultations, ergonomics sessions and also incentivizing health improvements. Companies including Nokia, Canon, Millward Brown, Stryker, etc. are proactively engaging in health programs with employees.

An important aspect of driving employee wellness is through complete involvement of the human resource department in communicating and organizing the wellness activities. This ensures high employee participation and engagement.

Employee wellness activities that take place in the office premises get better response in terms of employee participation. Some of the companies that we have worked with have seen their employee participation in annual health check-ups going up from a low 20-25 percent to more than 70 percent.

At Quest Diagnostics in India and worldwide, our employees undergo annual screening for common diseases and we encourage and enable them to take proactive steps towards a healthy life.

Quest Diagnostics is the world’s leading pathology lab. We work with employers all over the world to provide employee health risk assessment solutions. Through blood testing, we screen for disease risks and help employees take proactive steps towards a healthy life.

In India, we offer our Blue Print for Wellness program, which includes an employee communication plan, blood draw and reports distributed at the office site. All tests are performed in our CAP and NABL accredited laboratory in Gurgaon.

Some of the key advantages of Quest Diagnostics’ employer wellness solutions include:

1) Convenience: Our program is performed within the office premises and takes just 20 minutes per employee to complete
2) Customization: We offer a range of panels to suit all different needs of employers
3) Program management: Our wellness solutions involve a well laid out communication plan for the employees to ensure higher participation and engagement
4) Reports: Quest Diagnostics provides a unique report, ‘Employer Wellness Report’ that enables organizations to measure their health risks and take appropriate actions


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Topics: Compensation & Benefits, Strategic HR, #TotalRewards, #Trends

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