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Mindfulness: The next trend in employee wellness

Posted by Christine L. Tricoli

For years, organizations have invested heavily in wellness plans designed to help keep their employees healthy. From Google's on-site physicians and free fitness centers to local businesses' healthy lunch discounts, companies of all types have embraced the preventative strategy. In fact, seven in 10 U.S. companies offered physical wellness programs to their employees last year, according the Society for Human Resource Management's "2015 Employee Benefits" report. The goal? By encouraging their employees to live more healthy lifestyles, companies hope to avoid costly healthcare claims. 

As widespread as physical wellness initiatives have become, however, they address only one aspect of disease prevention.

Along with traditional factors like diet and exercise, mental health is also essential for physical wellbeing. In fact, chronic stress and hypertension can play a role in the development of several of the most costly medical conditions in the U.S. For example, heart disease, stroke, obesity and depression have all been linked to chronic stress. Heart disease and stroke alone account for more than $300 billion in medical costs annually, according to the American Heart Association. 

Let us s​how you how you can save 15-30% on your company's total medical  costs. 

Employers are in a unique position to help counter the stress in their employees' lives because, in many cases, a person's job is their greatest source of stress. More than one-third of people suffer from work-related stress, which ends up costing companies as much as $30 billion every year, the Harvard Gazette reported.  

To help your employees combat the stress in their lives, consider implementing a mindfulness program into your work culture. Initiatives could include complementary yoga classes, lunchtime meditation sessions or free education on other stress mitigation tips. Where appropriate, flexible work hours could also contribute to a lower-stress culture, since employees will feel more comfortable to deal with stressful situations at home as they arise rather than letting them affect their productivity in the background. 

Posted by Christine L. Tricoli

Christine Tricoli is manager of Business Development for Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. She joined Kelsey-Seybold in 2004. She is responsible for developing new business relationships with key business leaders, plan sponsors and the brokerage community. Prior to joining Kelsey-Seybold, Christine was a senior sales account executive for a major health insurance company in the Houston market. She brings more than 30 years of experience in managed healthcare in Houston. Christine holds a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and a Group 1 Insurance License. She is fluent in Spanish.

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Topics: Wellness, Workplace Stress

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