By Terri Mangrum, guest blogger
Healthcare benefits are important, and according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 91 percent of employees back up that claim. However, many employees forget that maintaining wellness is just as significant as the healthcare coverage itself. Wellness allows you to live longer, feel better, and spend less on healthcare, which, in turn, lowers medical insurance premium costs.
Why Wellness and Health Insurance Should Be Friends
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 59% of employees do not get adequate exercise, 50% or more have higher cholesterol, 27% have cardiovascular disease, 26% are overweight by 20% or more, and 24% have high blood pressure. These health risks are easily preventable, as almost 50% of medical costs are incurred due to illnesses that can be avoided with small lifestyle changes.
These small changes can add up to a lot of savings! According to the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP), a 1% annual reduction in weight, blood pressure, glucose, and cholesterol, has been shown to save $83 to $103 annually in medical costs per person.
How It’s Done
So, how do you live a healthy lifestyle and save money? Fortunately, for you, many healthcare insurers, including BlueCross BlueShield have ways in which you can track your health and maintain wellness. Wellness resources can include an available wellness portal and mobile app that clients can access to monitor their health stats.
On the portal or app, clients can fill out personal health assessments and get tailored information on their specific health circumstances. Clients also have access to self-directed health courses and seminars, membership discounts to wellness products and services, biometric screenings, and access to telehealth/telemedicine and 24/7 help lines and assistance from a licensed nurse. Using a telephone or video visit with a physician or nurse can eliminate a costly and time-consuming doctor’s office visit.
Make It Your Choice
In a perfect world, health insurance would be necessary for accidents and injuries only, but many now rely on health coverage for their day-to-day livelihood. Many still have the good fortune to choose if they want their well-being to be the result of on-going expensive physician care and medications or the result of applying a few positive lifestyle habits and wellness tools. With so many tools at your disposal, keeping track of your wellness has never been easier, and it will help people retain better health and more of their paycheck. Health insurance is necessary and can be vital to our well-being and security; however, paring wellness as an equally vital component reduces the need to rely on health insurance. It’s essentially the perfect match in an imperfect world.
To learn more about BCBS’s wellness program, click here. Our team at LBMC Employment Partners is also available to answer any questions you might have regarding wellness and health insurance coverage. Contact us today!