From Becker’s Hospital Review.

U.S. Hospital Employee Wellness Strategies Fall Behind Other Industries

U.S. hospitals are spending more on healthcare than other U.S. employers. But their greater investment fails to yield a healthier or better-performing workforce. On the contrary, as Towers Watson research shows, hospital workers report more health conditions and rate their employers relatively poorly on wellness efforts. Moreover, their health issues have a direct impact on patient care and satisfaction.

It’s time for hospitals to act.

Defining the problem
Last year, as part of Towers Watson’s 2012 Global Workforce Study, which examines attitudes and perceptions of more than 32,000 workers around the world, we surveyed 1,055 hospital employees in the U.S. The survey asked respondents to self-report a range of health conditions, including high blood pressure, diabetes and unhealthy cholesterol levels. We found that U.S. hospital employees reported, on average, 15 percent more health conditions than the U.S. workforce overall. In addition, 19 percent of U.S. hospital employees said they were managing two or more health conditions, compared with 13 percent of U.S. workers overall. These differences are statistically significant. Towers Watson’s findings are consistent with a Thomson Reuters analysis showing that hospital workers are nearly 9 percent more likely than the U.S. workforce overall to be diagnosed with chronic medical conditions. An unhealthy workforce is also a costly workforce. A 2012 joint Towers Watson/National Business Group on Health survey indicates that healthcare costs for hospital employees are 13 percent higher than the overall U.S. workforce. (7/2013)

Click here to read the entire article, which was written by Patrick Kulesa, Global Research Director at Towers Watson.