Post written by Dr. Tyann G. Hamedi, M.D.
Good health and wellness were previously seen as freedom from disease; but now, good health and wellness are being linked to our lifestyle and the choices we make. Each person has the ability to work toward a healthier lifestyle.
This includes maintaining a proper weight, good nutrition, physical activity, decreasing stress and the control of health risk factors such as blood pressure, elevated glucose levels, tobacco use, alcohol and drug use. All of these have a significant role in today’s wellness.
Benefits of Comprehensive Employer Wellness Programs
Considering that our health impacts our daily life and we spend most of our day at work, it seems obvious that our workplace is an ideal setting for implementing wellness activities and programs.
According to recent studies, 75% of all who have health insurance acquire it through an employer-sponsored plan. The ever-increasing cost of providing health care is the driving force to seek new ways to improve our health and wellness, while trying to decrease costs. Studies have repeatedly demonstrated that comprehensive employer wellness programs can:
- Lower healthcare costs for both the employee and the employer
- Help employees gain financial rewards/incentives for being healthy
- Make it easier for people to attain/maintain healthy lifestyles
- Reduce illness and decrease the rate of absenteeism
- Build supportive communities in our workforce
- Optimize performance and productivity
- Allow each individual a fuller, more enjoyable and healthier lifestyle.
Small Businesses Getting Involved
Traditionally, corporate wellness programs have only been available through large corporations. However, with over 30 million small businesses in the United States employing more than 60 million adults, the small businesses are also getting involved.
In a recent study on small businesses, it was shown that a small business with committed leadership, effective program design, and proper use of incentives can also attain a high level of participation in a comprehensive wellness program, saving health care dollars, just like the larger corporations. Consequently, more small businesses are creating and offering customized wellness programs to benefit their employees and the organization.
Companies Strengthen Competitive Advantage With Wellness Programs
Strengthening the organization’s culture, employee loyalty, and decreasing overall health care costs are the benefits when a wellness program is integrated into the business strategy. It has been demonstrated that these benefits can significantly improve the competitive advantage for these companies through lower medical costs, reduced workers’ compensation, decreased absenteeism and improved productivity.
The escalating costs and the uncertainty of today’s health care environment demands accountability and responsibility toward a healthier lifestyle. We can no longer afford to expect good health and care to be given to us. Each individual must become proactive in making lifestyle decisions, or allow his or her wellbeing to suffer. It is time for medicine and the people they care for to team up and bring wellness, not just illness, into our vocabulary. Times have changed and we must all change with it.
KCIM Launches Corporate Medicine Division
These changes have been the drivers for Kansas City Internal Medicine, the city’s largest privately held internal medicine practice with over 150 employees and serving over 125,000 patient visits per year, to start a new division which will address Corporate Medicine Services for our community. “Corporate Medicine Services will encompass both wellness initiatives and pre-placement services, and injury care. Our goal is to take the high quality care we deliver ‘on the road,’ and provide concierge services to our community employers,” said, Keith Jantz, M.D., President.
“Along with Dr. Hamedi, Dr. Marianne Hudgins, our exemplary ancillary staff, and leadership, we have assembled a team who will not only be able to provide the highest level of care to local employer groups, but also address wellness and productivity in an innovative approach,” said Jantz.
KCIM Partners With Employers
KCIM recognizes that some of the many challenges facing our community today are the high rates of obesity, hypertension, high cholesterol, and other risk factors that are primarily a result of inactive and indulgent lifestyles. These risks impact the lives of our community both in and outside of the workplace, and, at a minimum, create a model of unsustainable costs for our employers and all related parties.
Our new division will assist employers in hiring quality staff members, improving the health status of their employees, building a culture of health, efficiently addressing injuries and cause, and, as a result, reduce health care costs, improve productivity, improve recruitment and retention, enhance company visibility and ensure social responsibility.
Prevention Is Key
At KCIM, we believe prevention is one of the most important hallmarks in medicine. By providing services that can include employee education, vaccinations, weight/exercise program management, and one-on-one health care management of those high-risk employees, prevention and wellness will be started. On the other side of prevention is proper treatment of illness and injury care.
We are pleased to offer these full onsite services as well. KCIM also provides full Occupational Medicine services in our Overland Park office, where we can address workplace injuries, drug screenings, pre- and post-offer employment physicals and all related services.
To learn more about the Corporate Medicine & Wellness Division at KCIM, please call us today at 913-451-8500.