One of the most overlooked factors of comprehensive benefits plans are programs that help identify and reduce health risks for employees

Unhealthy employees are expensive. A Gallup poll commissioned in 2011 found that unhealthy, absent American workers cost employers as much as $153 billion per year in lost productivity alone. And though unhealthy employees make up only 20 percent of the population, they account for 80 percent of health care expenditures, per the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

If your clients want to reverse the trend of rising health care costs, it's important to have a health benefits strategy in place that gives unhealthy employees access to low-cost, high-quality care. One of the best ways to do this is implementing an onsite health center using a population health risk management program. Population health looks at all the factors impacting an individual's health, including genetic predisposition to disease, lifestyle risks such as tobacco use, alcohol and substance abuse, eating habits, and levels of physical activity. It focuses on people with chronic conditions such as diabetes and asthma, and helps them manage their condition, ensuring they are at the standard of care, an important factor in preventing serious and costly complications. Chronic conditions may not seem expensive at first glance, but upon closer examination, the costs add up. 

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