A recent article in Employee Benefit News explained how wellness dollars are too often a well-kept secret. They’re a percent of your health care premium that your insurance carrier will make available to you to invest in qualifying wellness programs – but only if you ask. Let’s take a look at what wellness dollars are and how you can make the best use of the money.
What are wellness dollars?
Wellness dollars are a percentage of premiums that many insurance carriers give to their clients to use for qualifying wellness programs. Not all insurance carriers offer wellness dollars, so it’s important to ask. If your carrier doesn’t include this, consider negotiating that into your contract.
How much can we get?
The percentage of the premium you receive typically depends on the number of employees, profitability, and employee health. But again, it’s important to ask your carrier these questions or check your contract.
How can they be used?
How wellness dollars can be used is up to your insurance carrier, based on your contract with them. Maybe they can be used for a wellness program or wellness activities. They could be used to cover gym memberships or other fitness programs. Sometimes wellness dollars can also be used to cover chronic disease management programs, health coaching, or other physical health programs.
It’s important to take a close look at your employee population to decide the best way to make use of your wellness dollars. Consider these questions:
- Are you seeing a high number of claims related to diabetes, high blood pressure, etc.? If yes, then a chronic disease management program might be for you.
- Are your employees fairly healthy with minimal risk? Then you could consider a comprehensive wellness program that addresses everyone at every risk level.
- Have your employees asked for reimbursement on things to help them stay healthy? Maybe a gym membership is called for.
Many of SentryHealth’s services and programs are eligible for wellness dollar spend. We’d love to chat with you about how we can help you maximize your wellness dollars and drive overall better health within your organization.