According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as of 2012, about half of all adults – 117 million people – had one or more chronic health conditions, and one in four adults had two or more chronic health conditions. These chronic diseases and conditions – including diabetes, heart disease, obesity, arthritis, and certain types of cancer – are some of the most common, deadliest, and costly health issues in the United States.
The good news is many of these chronic diseases and conditions can be prevented. However, many adults don’t practice preventative behaviors to help lower their risks for these diseases. This could be because many people are uneducated about the power of prevention or how to live a healthier lifestyle to combat these risks. One possible solution for this is developing a workplace wellness program that focuses on prevention. Focusing on the power of prevention could help educate employees on how to reduce their risk for these serious health problems before it’s too late.
Employers should view prevention as a priority for employee wellness. Not only do these chronic diseases and conditions slow down a workforce, they’re extremely costly too. In fact, the CDC states that 86% of the nation’s $2.7 trillion annual healthcare expenditures are for people with chronic and mental health conditions. Because many of these costs can be reduced through preventative healthcare, it’s crucial that employers emphasis prevention in their employee wellness programs.