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April 1, 2015

Wellness Programs Save Money!

Summary:

The author, a longtime critic of claims that corporate wellness programs deliver a return on investment, says he has reconsidered his position.

Photo Courtesy of Anna

April Fools.

Of course wellness doesn’t save money. Even the industry trade association itself, the Health Enhancement Research Organization, admits wellness loses money.

That doesn’t mean the industry lacks other benefits, such as levity. And in the spirit of the wellness field’s most appropriate holiday, we present “On the (Even) Lighter Side,” a compendium of the funniest moments in recent wellness history.

Unfortunately, the joke is that wellness is not a joke. Besides damaging morale, things are being done to employees that could even harm them — medical interventions that the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) urges not be done. Even routine screens that are done to employees — only for cholesterol and related blood values — shouldn’t be done annually, and shouldn’t be done on everyone, according to the USPSTF.

Still, we’ll let it go this one day and urge you to do the same and enjoy the one contribution that wellness advocates are bringing to the healthcare policy debate: merriment.

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About the Author

Al Lewis, widely credited with having invented disease management, is co-founder and CEO of Quizzify, the leading employee health literacy vendor. He was founding president of the Care Continuum Alliance and is president of the Disease Management Purchasing Consortium.

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