The Benefits of Health Promotion in the Workplace
Health promotion in the workplace benefits not only the company, but the employee as well. Additionally, there is a distinct trickle-down effect as the benefits are transferred from employee to family members. Health promotion in the workplace creates conditions that support and teach the best possible health for the employee.
This gives employees a sense of ownership and they learn to work together to form a coordinated action to improve well being. Areas such as health promotion, heart health, nutrition, fitness, recreation, tobacco and alcohol awareness and workplace safety are all areas where health promotion in the workplace is very effective. Implementing such a program gives employees a feeling of being more than just a number. It brings the humanity of companies back to the corporate forefront.
Wellness programs are generally more focused on prevention which facilitates a proactive approach to healthcare. This, in turn, leads to an overall decrease in health care costs. Disease management, health education and health maintenance are all crucial in creating a solid wellness foundation within an organization.
There is strong evidence to support the effectiveness of health promotion in the workplace and concur that these types of interventions make a significant difference within the organizational structure. Companies that implement wellness programs for their employees encourage healthy lifestyles for not only employees, but their families as well.
Mental health programs as a part of health promotion in the workplace have been shown to significantly reduce depression in employees. Additionally, companies employing this strategy also enjoy reduced suicide rates and reduced behavioral problems among employees.
Mental health programs and stress management classes have also resulted in less domestic aggression and a more positive environment for employees. On a social level, there are fewer learning problems, a significant reduction in child abuse as well as spousal abuse.
Companies that address health and safety issues of employees regarding their work environment do experience a decrease in on the job injuries and fewer worker’s compensation claims. Occupational health and safety also helps to decrease the number of deaths and disabilities in the workplace. Time loss injuries are also substantially decreased when workers are adequately trained and these types of workplace health and wellness safety programs are implemented.
Wellness programs and general health promotion in the workplace show employees that the organization recognizes that both the employer and the employee share some extent of responsibility for the employee’s health. It shows the employee that their health is of importance to the organization. And it should be important. Healthier employees mean fewer absences and a lower turnover rate.
In short, the benefits of health promotion in the workplace are many. The greatest benefit, however, is in the human aspect of the organization. When the people are taken care of, the company’s bottom line remains intact. With reduced absenteeism and health care costs, organizations should seriously consider wellness programs as a viable, effective method for reducing employee related expenses and strengthening their personnel relations within the company.
Health promotion in the workplace can cut costs and yield productivity increases, but it is not a cure-all. Businesses must also consider job design, organizational systems, human resource management practices and workplace culture. All these must be conducive to a productive, healthy workplace.
Businesses interested in learning more about the benefits of health promotion in the workplace will find a plethora of information on the World Wide Web. Web sites like Wellness Proposals and WELCOA provide many free wellness resources designed to assist with all aspects of corporate health promotion and wellness.
Writer Bio: John Bates is a leading wellness industry consultant and prolific writer about all aspects of health and wellness programs. His work can be found on numerous wellness websites including his own: Infinite Wellness Solution’s and Infinite Health Coach.