As we head into 2021, employers are looking to turn the page on a tough year. However, the push for digital health and wellness programs is still prevalent and should be part of your 2021 plan. As many organizations remain remote, employees are missing out on health and wellness perks that were available while working in the office. It is important for employers to keep their employees motivated to stay healthy, especially through the winter months.
For older populations covered by Medicare, ensuring these employees get their year off to a healthy start with their annual preventative care visit, as well as encouraging healthy behavior, is key to long-term wellness program success.
For any workforce, health and wellness program success (even in a pandemic) results in reducing company healthcare costs, lowering health risks for preventable conditions, encouraging healthy habits, and reducing absenteeism.
As you begin 2021 planning, gift cards can help support a strong, healthy start to the new year even as many employees continue to spend more time at home and Telehealth remains a prominent component to healthcare services.
Employee Health and Wellness Remains Digital
Employees have become accustomed to wellness perks in the office, whether it’s an in-office gym, a gym stipend through health insurance policies, or fitness groups within the workforce. Since the beginning of the pandemic, these perks haven’t been accessible. As HR teams plan their wellness incentives for 2021 it’s important to shift initiatives to digital, rather than deprioritize them. Healthy employees maintain productivity and have decreased absenteeism rates, even during flu season, helping keep your business running. Digital health and wellness programs can accomplish a variety of goals such as:
- Maintaining fitness focused groups within your workforce, like a walking club or a healthy recipe group. Find ways to move meetings online, whether a standing Zoom meeting or a Slack channel.
- Promoting healthy eating- While you can’t provide healthy meals and snacks to employees you can still promote healthy eating among employees. Try creating small groups that share healthy lunches at regular intervals on a video call.
- Focusing on mental health- Mental health concerns have been recognized as a result of the pandemic, so focusing on managing employees’ mental health could have a real impact on your workforce. With gift cards, like those to Apple, it’s easy to support employees by covering subscriptions that provide digital mental health services through tele-therapy, meditation apps, etc.
- Encouraging flu vaccines- Getting a flu shot later in the season is better than not getting one at all. Promoting vaccination helps keep your workforce healthy and productive throughout flu season and the pandemic. CVS® gift cards can be provided to cover the cost of the flu shot, and can be used to purchase cold/flu medicine and various health products employees may look to stock up on at this time of the year.
Medicare Patients Need to Start 2021 Healthy and Strong
For many organizations, their health and wellness programs serve a broad age range. For employees who may be covered by Medicare, it’s especially important to ensure they stay on top of their healthcare. Throughout the pandemic, many people have fallen behind on preventative health care appointments and elective procedures.
Using a health and wellness program can remind, incentivize and support employees to make those preventative care appointments (even if they are delivered through Telehealth) and to manage prescriptions. Providing gift card incentives, that promote a healthy lifestyle to these programs can be a great way to promote healthy behavior within older employee populations without singling them out among their peers and colleagues.
How eGift Cards Can Support Your Wellness Program
As you select your incentives and rewards for your 2021 health and wellness program, eGift cards are not only a popular choice, they are proven to be impactful in serving your employee population. eGift cards provide a variety of brand choices that appeal to employees, helping promote wellness through exercise, mental health and meditation with brands like Apple, or stocking up on essential supplies with brands like CVS®, and with gift cards from brands like Home Chef, organization’s can even support healthy eating at home with meal delivery kits.
eGift cards also support your digital wellness programs through their ease of delivery. Delivered digitally and instantly, eGift cards make it simple to provide incentives and rewards to a dispersed or remote workforce. Finally, as HR teams look for ways to gain adoption for programmatic shifts to digital programs in 2021, integrating digital health and wellness incentives can be critical to increasing adoption and maintaining participation in digital wellness programs in 2021.
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