Wellness programs allow hospitals to improve the health and lower the medical expenses of their patient population as well as employers, including their own.
With the emergence of the ACO model,hospitals will broaden their focus beyond just treating the sick to keeping people healthy by preventing expensive hospital visits. With most of the resources for a traditional wellness program (flu shots, biometric screenings, etc.) in-house, hospitals are well positioned to engage in population health management, and progressive institutions have already begun to deliver wellness programs with existing resources. For example, two Florida hospitals have been experimenting with patient wellness programs. “Since 2010, Florida Hospital has been offering a wellness program called ‘Change Your Life With Florida Hospital’ that provides rewards and encouragement for patients to make positive lifestyle changes.” Another hospital in Florida, Halifax Health, just launched a similar program.
As hospitals begin to embrace more innovative technology-driven wellness solutions to drive higher engagement and more effective behavior change, progressive and modern solutions, such as mobile wellness, will be particularly helpful in engaging with and reducing the healthcare costs of difficult to reach populations.
Like other employers, hospitals want their employees to be healthy because healthy employees are cheaper to insure, more productive, miss fewer days of work, and are generally happier. With the same resources used for population health management, hospitals can deliver wellness programs internally and externally to other employers.
As the mobile wellness movement continues to pick up steam, hospitals will be well positioned to deploy high-engagement mobile wellness to themselves and other employers. According to one study, “By next year, 9 in 10 healthcare providers will use smartphones.” With high employee smartphone adoption, hospitals will be able to seamlessly deploy mobile wellness solutions to employees.
For more on hospital wellness programs: http://www.news-journalonline.com/article/20130809/BUSINESS/130809450/1024?p=1&tc=pg&tc=ar
For more on healthcare provider mobile technology trends: http://www.epocrates.com/oldsite/statistics/2013%20Epocrates%20Mobile%20Trends%20Report_FINAL.pdf
Reach out to Wellable to learn more about mobile wellness and how your hospital can offer high-engagement wellness programs.