Top Employee Healthcare Trends to Watch Out For the Coming New Year
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A healthy workforce is a satisfied workforce. Improving employees’ work satisfaction is fast becoming the core of deploying healthcare services. Health and well-being of employees is a priority today because employer recognize the value of a healthy workforce. Increased productivity and decreasing long-term costs are automatic.

Here is something to look forward to this New Year. Listen to what the HR leaders from Digi, Schneider Electric, HP and ABB have to say on top healthcare and wellness trends.

1. Total well-being
What is surprising is the inclusion of mental health, nutrition options and stress management as well as many others in the scope of employees’ health and well-being.

According to Sulaxmi Prasad, head of performance, rewards and analytics at Digi Telecommunications stopping at gym subscriptions is passé. The next year will see proactive wellness programs being more popular than ever. Many corporates already have dining halls providing nutritious food. However, smarter employer is one who promotes good eating habits through on-site push towards eating healthy and provide backup support for nutrition consulting with subsidies.

Financial well-being as a result of holistic wellness is trending. It influences employees physically, mentally as well as spiritually. A novel way could be to subsidize education loans for fresh graduates freeing up income for better eating habits.

2. Personalized healthcare
Companies have always been concerned over employee engagement rate in promoting healthcare packages. Programs tailored to individuals elicits best response resulting in lower overall healthcare costs.

Schneider Electric Company leveraged analytics and technology to check healthcare effectiveness. Linda Lim, director of rewards solutions at Schneider Electric says lower hospitalization rate is a direct result of increased health screen participation.

Personalized healthcare packages reaps benefits. There is a significant fall in healthcare claims. This has become possible due to encouraging and empowering employees to take initiative in assuming control of their own health and wellbeing.

3. Company-wide wellness practices
An increasing number of employers are trending towards healthcare and wellness strategies. These are meant to implement the programs drawing employees into the entire experience. Changing office designs such as standing desks, on-site gyms and recreation programs are adapting in order to provide a culture of healthy living.

The ‘feel-good factor’ is something that each one of us turns to often just about anytime, anywhere. Derrick Lim, training and employee engagement lead at Hewlett-Packard Singapore believes satisfied employees feeling good to work in their companies contribute largely towards the long-term company health and performance.

According to Lim, “The feel good factor depends on individuals’ mood, environment, food, colleagues and event-specific triggers.” He says employers assessing the feel good factor in their workforce can improve the company’s happiness index. Employees with high feel good factor are less likely to go elsewhere and company retains good employees.

4. Strategic healthcare cost management
There is no question that healthcare costs are rising. Organizations and corporates may do just about anything in their power to control healthcare costs and expenses. Their main aim always has been to promote active healthcare participation. Easy to access enhanced care services are exactly the encouragement needed.

Janice Ong, pension and benefits director at ABB Singapore, warns employers about challenges facing them. Employers are going to have a tough time restricting health costs. Necessary sustaining healthcare programs will have to come at a significant cost to the company.

She further says ABB is trying to find ways to tackle rising healthcare costs. One of the ways that will definitely be effective is driving a more proactive long-term approach. These challenges can be better managed by working closely with vendors. It will help track risks and exposures and review our health insurance program funding strategy. ABB pledges to continue its drive in carrying out their global health strategies successfully.

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