The easiest way to get a snapshot of the overall health of your employee population is to engage them in completing a Health Assessment (also known as a Health Risk Assessment or Health Questionnaire). Aside from providing you with the insight you’re looking for, it’s also a great, inexpensive way to give employees’ a look into their own well-being and educate them about potential risk factors.
A good Health Assessment will identify areas where an employee is at risk for disease and provide education on how to make lifestyle changes to lower that risk.
A good Health Assessment will identify areas where an employee is at risk for disease and provide education on how to make lifestyle changes to lower that risk. The aggregate results give the company direction into what types of wellness interventions will best target the risks of their employees and helps ensure that the dollars spent on wellness initiatives are effective and beneficial to your employees.
Finding an effective Health Assessment
Most Wellness vendors offer some type of Health Assessment. But before you purchase one, make sure to check with your health plan provider to see if they offer a Health Assessment as part of their built-in benefits. Either avenue will do what you are looking for. And having an outside source deliver the Health Assessment will give your employees a better sense of security about the confidentiality of their results.
Four things to look for:
- Evidence based questions – The survey should include evidence-based questions from a reputable source, such as the Centers for Disease Control, Framingham Heart Study and Prochaska and DiClemente’s Stages of Change.
- User’s readiness to change – Your survey should also measure a user’s readiness to change. This can help you plan the wellness intervention to accommodate risk factors with the highest number of employees but also for the employees that indicate the highest readiness to make lifestyle changes.
- Educational component – Many online surveys offer immediate results with health tips tailored to each individual’s results. It’s an easy value-add that encourages your employees to take steps toward healthier habits right way, and at no additional cost to you.
- Biometric screening – Having both assessments connected helps your employees keep all of their health related information in one place.
- BONUS – Impact on health care costs – If you are conducting your health assessment through your health care provider, they will be able to integrate the information with your health care claims. This will identify the impact that your employees’ health risks have on your, and their, health care costs.
Planning ahead for results
A Health Assessment can be a great starting point when implementing an employee wellness program, but it can also compliment a more comprehensive program. Either way, after your employees take the assessment, it’s important to include some actionable component for the workplace based on the results. This will help demonstrate to your employees that you are not just checking a box but are actively trying to assist them in leading a healthier lifestyle.
If you haven’t yet offered a Health Assessment, it’s definitely an option you should consider.