Preventing diabetes among your workforce may help raise your profit margins and decrease the absentee rates among your employees. Implementing a wellness program centered around diabetes prevention and care is a great way to engage employees in their own health and wellness.
While starting a program in any time of year is effective, November is dedicated to Diabetes Awareness. In a society where every month has a meaning, it may not occur to you how much diabetes is costing your business. Before November is over, take a look at some facts about diabetes’ cost to the business sector in the U.S. and see why it is imperative to prevent this disease:
- Employee work missed due to diabetes cost businesses $16 billion per year based on current prevalence of the disease, according to the American Diabetes Association
- According to Wallethub, healthcare costs for people with diabetes are 2.3 times those of healthy people
- 90 percent of Type 2 diabetes patients are overweight or obese
- Diabetes risk decreases by 26 percent in people who get at least 2.5 hours of exercise per week
For employers looking to prevent diabetes to avoid the adverse financial and productivity effects on their business, the path to success is pretty clear. The healthier your employees are, the less work they will miss. Fostering a culture of health and wellness will not only reduce absenteeism but will lower the costs of employees on your health insurance benefits.
Starting a health and wellness program, specifically targeting diabetes and other preventable diseases, is a great first action to decrease costs on your organization. This program can be as simple as encouraging employees to exercise 3 times a week by taking a walk during lunch, or starting a jogging club after work. Encouraging exercise and movement can help your employees enjoy the 26 percent risk decrease for diabetes.
Rewarding healthy employees is another way to help encourage the lifestyle changes necessary to decrease risk factors for lifestyle associated health conditions. Whether it’s a gift card to a healthy retailer for hitting an exercise goal over a period of time, or a rebate on health insurance, taking small steps to reward employees for keeping themselves healthy, and your business functioning at the peak of productivity is an investment that is sure to provide a return.
Diabetes Awareness Month is a great time to kickstart your diabetes prevention or health and wellness program. How will you motivate your employees to stay healthy around the holidays? Let us know in the comments.