Wellness programs are on the rise in workplaces across the country, but with their growing popularity has come increased scrutiny of their effectiveness. Some experts claim that seemingly intuitive policies aimed at rewarding health lifestyles could produce the opposite effect.

In particular, some say that financial penalties for certain behaviors could deter people from engaging in the wellness program or interacting with health care professionals.   

"Some say [penalties] are good because it forces people to be healthy. But that's not what the evidence says. These programs can prevent people from accessing the services they need, and that can have a detrimental effect on their health," Claire McAndrew, private insurance program director at Families USA, a consumer advocacy organization, told U.S. News and World Report. 

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