It has long been my opinion that the health strategy most companies adopt is outdated and doesn’t actually utilise the full suite of health solutions at their disposal.
Of course, this isn’t true of all - some companies do have robust health strategies in place, but the vast majority treat the independent component parts of their health solution as exactly that: siloes of neatly compartmentalised independent products.
"An integrated health approach takes the burden from the traditional health interventions such as private medical insurance, which is chronically overused and becoming more and more expensive."
When I talk about the different component parts I am referring to a number of solutions or products that companies offer in the health spectrum, namely:
- private medical insurance
- health cash plans
- group income protection
- employee assistance programs
- absence management
- occupational health
- prevention initiatives
While each of these will operate in silo and function perfectly well, they are much more effective and provide a greater return on investment when they are considered as part of a wider health strategy.
Imagine, if you will, the Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers (I appreciate I have probably lost two-thirds of my audience with this analogy, but in my defence my son loves it!). On their own, the Power Rangers’ robot allies are good, but it’s only when they combine to create an even bigger and more powerful robot, that they become great and can then defeat the forces of evil.
Still with me?
If we begin to think about what an integrated health solution could look like, we can consider:
- what absence-management triggers should be put in place based on the intervention pathways available
- how an occupational health or similar triage function should be used to ensure the most appropriate pathway is taken
- how we start intuitively signposting employees to the most appropriate treatment provider, rather than leaving them to their own devices
Importantly, an integrated health approach takes the burden from the traditional health interventions such as private medical insurance, which is chronically overused and becoming more and more expensive - redistributing to other health interventions where appropriate.
Our experience tells us that this type of approach can create savings of up to 40% on total health spend, while significantly cutting absence costs.
I am not going to give too much more away as I have an avid Power Rangers fan to feed, but if you would like to discuss further, please feel free to drop me a line.
This article first appeared on REBA global
This blog post was written by Carl Chapman. For further enquiries please contact Damian Stancombe, Head of Workplace Health and Wealth.