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September 26, 2013
Dell program yields healthier employees, healthier bottom line

Dell has earned one of the nation’s most prestigious awards for its commitment to employee health. The computer giant is the winner of The Health Project’s 2013 C. Everett Koop National Health Award.

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Find out if some of Dell’s ideas could work for your employees.

In 2004 Dell launched a comprehensive health-improvement program called Well at Dell. The company provides financial incentives to engage and reward participants who monitor, maintain, and improve their health.

The program features annual health screenings, quarterly wellness challenges, coaching to reduce risks, condition management programs, on-site health and fitness centers, and a virtual wellness program.

In the past year, more than 80 percent of Dell employees and 45 percent of spouses/domestic partners have participated. Over a 4-year period, Dell identified improvements in 9 out of 12 tracked health risks and an annual return on investment of at least two to one. The most improved areas included physical activity, nutrition, stress, and weight management.

Program participants pay less for health care

Participants in Well at Dell are asked to get a yearly physical or attend on-site health screenings and complete an annual health survey. Depending on the findings and current risks, participants are placed into one of three categories:

  • Those who meet recommended health goals;
  • Those who miss a health goal and are invited to work with a coach to make progress toward that goal over a 10- to 12-month period; and
  • Those who choose not to engage in programs and pay higher medical premiums.

Could this type of program work at your place of business? Talk to your health plan provider about launching a wellness program for your employees. Many experts recommend starting with an employee survey to learn about their concerns and what program elements they would like to see.

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