When properly integrated with a corporate wellness plan, research demonstrates that biometric screenings can help reduce health risks, improve health status, reduce health care costs, and improve workplace productivity and performance.
The Willis Health and Productivity Survey Report shows that 74 percent of employers now include a biometric screening as part of their workplace wellness program and this number is likely to rise as more companies come to understand the value they can provide employees.
Screenings help employees know their numbers
Learning a few numbers—through a health screening—tells your employees quite a bit about their health. A biometric screening provides a baseline assessment of your employees’ health status regarding obesity, blood pressure, blood glucose, total cholesterol, HDL and LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides.
Screenings can help detect disease in its early and most treatable stages—even before symptoms are recognized—and provide a snapshot of a participant’s health that prompts them to take action. In fact, 98 percent of the screening participants at our client sites said they plan to take steps to change unhealthy behaviors that lead to health risks.
On-site or primary care provider-based health screenings?
When it comes to health screenings, employers are faced with a choice: provide on-site screening services orsend their employees to their primary care doctor or a lab. At HealthFitness, employees at our client sites have the option of participating in on-site health screenings or obtaining similar services through their primary care provider.
On-site health screenings remove barriers for employee participation, such as perceived lack of time and inconvenience.
On the other hand, screenings through alternative means, such as sending employees to their primary care provider, might be a good solution for employees that work remotely in several locations.
Even if you understand the value of on-site health screenings, the question for employers remains: Is it more cost-effective to screen your employees on-site or send your employees to their primary care provider?
Recently, our Science and Analytics team set out to answer this question by analyzing medical claims data from employees at our client sites from 2007 to 2015. Using a per-capita cost of $65 for on-site screening, the team analyzed data and modeled the salary levels of employees— ranging from minimum wage to a six-figure salary.
The result? On-site health screenings are far more cost-effective to employers than primary care provider-based screenings.
Our key findings include the following:
On-site health screening is more cost-effective than primary care provider-based health screening across all study years—from 2007 to 2015.
Health screening at a primary care provider may cost between 2.1 and 3.2 times more than an on-site health screening.
At all salary levels—from minimum wage to salaries of more than $150,000—it is more cost-effective to use on-site health screening.
Our team regularly partners with our clients to make informed, fact-based decisions. We will continue to conduct research on health screenings and will focus on outcomes and projections.