May 13, 2021
Why Telehealth Will be a Vital Part of Corporate Wellness Post-COVID
Throughout the pandemic, the benefits of telehealth have become more and more visible. Technology has enabled patients likely to develop severe symptoms to continue receiving high-quality healthcare. For hospitals, being able to offer digital healthcare has eased the burden on resources.
One area where telehealth has yet to make a significant impact, however, is corporate wellness. As lockdowns begin to ease and more companies return to the office, that will change. Here’s why.
What is Corporate Wellness?
Corporate wellness is a measurement of employee well-being, with the understanding that personal health and happiness contribute to better performance in the workplace. The term relates to policies and activities that support improved health—both mentally and physically.
Below are the dimensions of workplace well-being that corporate wellness aims to satisfy:
Examples of practices classed as corporate wellness include offering benefits like discounted gym memberships and healthcare. Complimentary fruit in the office and sponsored healthy lunches also count, as does a pleasant environment, inclusive company culture, and supportive leadership.
Current Employee Wellness Challenges
Many employees in the US struggle to balance work and their personal lives. According to the OECD Better Life Index, the country ranks 29th out of 40 countries in work-life balance. Numerous nations with lower GDPs per capita rank higher, including Latvia, Brazil, and Hungary.
Working too much—or under stressful conditions—leads to both mental and physical health problems. One of those is not getting enough sleep. Seventy million people in the US had chronic sleep problems in 2017. That was happening even before the pandemic affected every aspect of people’s lives, so the need for added support, such as telehealth, is clear.
Other employee wellness challenges include the stress of distractions and caring for dependents, isolation, and getting access to sufficient healthcare.
How Telehealth Will Improve Corporate Wellness
Telehealth Allows for Easy Healthcare Access
Healthcare inequality in the US is a huge problem. Before the Affordable Care Act came into effect, roughly 20% of people in the country had little or no healthcare access.
To this day, healthcare is spread unequally throughout the US. Sometimes it’s a question of being able to afford coverage, but other factors can come into play. People living in remote areas, for example, might have to travel long distances to get the care they need.
Telehealth helps to level the playing field by giving employees easy, private, remote access to healthcare without disrupting work schedules and the stress of in-office visits.
Telehealth Improves Mental Well-Being
Depression affects both the afflicted individual and their loved ones—and employers need to take note: the condition costs $44 billion per year in lost productivity. When employees are struggling with mental health, they are less able to concentrate and maintain productivity.
Telehealth improves mental well-being in numerous ways. Besides not needing to travel long distances, the technology offers peace of mind since patients know they’ll always have access to the help they need. Frequent support from care providers helps keep patients on track with their medication and personal care plans.
Telehealth Lowers Healthcare Costs
Healthcare costs in the US are notoriously high compared to many other developed countries. For many, these costs continue to rise.
In 2019, healthcare spending per person in the US stood at $11,582. By 2028, this is expected to soar to approximately $18,000.
The difference in telehealth costs compared to in-office visits is substantial. A 2017 study from Health Affairs found that the average patient spending per telehealth session was $79. In comparison, the cost of an office visit is $146.
Beyond saving costs for employees, employers find that telehealth is less expensive to offer as a benefit compared to in-office visits.
How ChronWell Can Help
As companies continue to adapt to a work and life landscape that has been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, digital health and corporate wellness will continue to play a pivotal role in ensuring their employees are well taken care of. Telehealth has the potential to grow to $250 billion in industry size, and ChronWell is well prepared for the increase in demand. We offer a broad range of telehealth technologies, including remote patient monitoring (RPM), chronic care management, and telemedicine.
If you would like to find out more about ChronWell’s digital health solutions to prepare for a post-COVID world, speak to one of our experts today.
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