With today's pricey health care, more emphasis is being placed on wellness programs in an effort to improve health and reduce costs. While wellness programs have proven to do just that, employers should not simply implement a one-size-fits-all mentality, says Cathy Tripp, managing consultant at Aon Hewitt. Instead, wellness programs should be tailored to meet the individual needs of an employee.

Health care has become so complex because of the continued effort to drive down costs, Tripp says. Between deductibles, out-of-pocket costs and the various consumer-driven health care plans, many employees are overwhelmed by the system. Employees are also now required to take greater ownership over their health, adding even more complexity to the situation.  

"There is so much information that gets pushed to employees, but we need to cut that noise and clutter and tell them what they need to do, when and why." Tripp says. "Health is a personal issue, so what I need to do about my health is about me and my risk factors, behaviors and attitudes. That could be entirely different from another person. The best approach is to individualize it and make it about me and what I need to do, given my health status and risks."

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