ThedaCare Health Matters

Assessments can improve workers’ health

This past month, I completed an employer-sponsored Health Risk Assessment (HRA). It seems more and more common for employers to offer HRAs to employees. But what is an HRA and why are they being done?    

It is no secret the cost of healthcare has been raising rapidly over the last 20 years. Employers have traditionally provided health insurance for its employees as a benefit. The healthcare costs are a large part of the company budget. So, employers are trying to find ways to minimize their healthcare costs. 

One way is to raise the amount the employee contributes to healthcare premiums, which has been happening. The other way is to have a healthier group of employees. Healthier employees tend to have lower absenteeism, be more productive and have lower healthcare expenses.   

One way to improve employee health is to provide opportunities through wellness programs that promote healthy lifestyles. Another strategy is to use financial incentives to improve health. This is where the HRA comes into the picture.

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