Healthy Incentives for Business – Cuts Costs and Helps Employees

Whether they deem it their job or not, businesses across the U.S. have a vested interest in maximizing the health and well-being of their employees. After all, obesity-related spends make up nearly 20 percent of all U.S. medical costs per year and obese individuals spend 42 percent more on healthcare costs, according to the Journal of Health Economics. Increased medical costs are also prevalent in Workers’ Compensation insurance, as those struggling with obesity are more likely to require a longer time to heal away from work.

How do the costs of obese workers compare with their healthier counterparts? According to statistics from Gallup, Duke University Medical Center and, work-related injuries of obese employees are 25% higher, and compensation claims are filed twice as much. The cost of those medical claims are also seven times higher than employees at a healthy weight. Obese employees are also more likely to be absent, averaging ten times more days off for a work injury or illness.

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