Health Risk Reduction Programs in Employer-Sponsored Health Plans: Part I - Efficacy

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Vol. 51, No. 8, August 2009

8 Pages Posted: 22 Sep 2009 Last revised: 13 Dec 2009

See all articles by Mark A. Rothstein

Mark A. Rothstein

University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law; University of Louisville - Louis D. Brandeis School of Law

Heather L. Harrell

University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law

Date Written: September 18, 2009

Abstract

We sought to determine whether workplace health risk reduction programs (HRRPs) using health risk assessments (HRAs), individually focused risk reduction, and financial incentives succeeded in improving employee health and reducing employer health benefit costs. Methods: We reviewed the proprietary HRA available to us and conducted a literature review to determine the efficacy of HRRPs using HRAs, individualized employee interventions, and financial incentives for employee participation. Results: There is some evidence that HRRPs in employer-sponsored programs improve measures of employee health, but the results of these studies are somewhat equivocal. Conclusion: Employer-sponsored HRRPs may have some benefits, but problems in plan design and in the studies assessing their efficacy complicate drawing conclusions. (J Occup Environ Med. 2009;51:943–950)

Keywords: Occupational Health, Employee Benefits, Health Risk Assessment, Wellness Programs, Health Risk Reduction Programs

JEL Classification: K31, K32

Suggested Citation

Rothstein, Mark A. and Harrell, Heather L., Health Risk Reduction Programs in Employer-Sponsored Health Plans: Part I - Efficacy (September 18, 2009). Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Vol. 51, No. 8, August 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1475346

Mark A. Rothstein (Contact Author)

University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law ( email )

Louisville, KY 40202
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.louisville.edu/bioethics

University of Louisville - Louis D. Brandeis School of Law ( email )

Wilson W. Wyatt Hall
Louisville, KY 40292
United States

Heather L. Harrell

University of Louisville - Institute for Bioethics, Health Policy, and Law

Louisville, KY 40202
United States

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