The workforce wellness index: A method for valuing US workers' health

Ronnie Goetzel, Gary Pickens, Niranjana Kowlessar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:: To devise a methodology to create a single health risk-cost score that can be applied to health risk assessment survey data and account for the medical costs associated with modifiable risks. METHODS:: We linked person-level health risk assessment data with medical benefit eligibility and claims data for 341,650 workers for the period 2005 to 2010 and performed multivariate analyses to estimate costs associated with high risks. We used the estimated costs and risk prevalence rates to create a composite Workforce Wellness Index (WWI) score. RESULTS:: Increasing obesity rates among employees was found to be the most important contributor to increased health care spending and the main reason the WWI score worsened over time. CONCLUSIONS:: Employers that address employees' health risk factors may be able to reduce their medical spending and achieve an improvement in their WWI scores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-279
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Volume55
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2013
Externally publishedYes

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Health
Costs and Cost Analysis
Occupational Health
Health Care Costs
Health Status
Multivariate Analysis
Obesity
Delivery of Health Care
Surveys and Questionnaires

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

The workforce wellness index : A method for valuing US workers' health. / Goetzel, Ronnie; Pickens, Gary; Kowlessar, Niranjana.

In: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Vol. 55, No. 3, 03.2013, p. 272-279.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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