By Nicole Chaudet, Executive Director, Product Execution
From manufacturing environments to office settings, addressing the work and non-work-related physical capabilities of employees can optimize your workforce—and lower the cost of injury and illness.
Research shows that losing workers due to on-the-job injuries can result in significant disruptions and costs to your company as well as your employees and their families. Nearly 3 million on-the-job injuries occur each year.(1) And while not all were considered serious, more than one-third required time off work in order to recover.
Why are there so many workplace injuries?
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), here are the top six reasons why there is a growing need for injury prevention and treatment programs. (2)
- The nature of work is evolving. The economy is shifting from a manufacturing to a service base, and from a fixed to a mobile workforce.
- Automation of work activities. Technology, computers, and robotics are being integrated into our workplaces, often introducing new and different hazards.
- Greater workforce diversity. People from different backgrounds and cultures are working alongside each other, often speaking different languages and creating communication barriers in the process.
- An aging workforce. The rise of sedentary work and lifestyles means that some workers are at higher risk for work-related musculoskeletal disorders.
- No industry is completely safe. There is greater recognition that workers in industries some consider safe (such as health care, lodging, retail, and transportation) face significant hazards.
- Increased temporary and contract employment. Traditional relationships between workers and employers are shifting, and changes in safety programs and policies will be required to ensure the safety of all workers at worksites.
Why HealthFitness for injury and prevention?
Focusing on the health and safety of employees, by addressing work and non-work related physical capabilities, can optimize your workforce—and lower the cost of injury and illness. Here are some examples from among our own clients:
Energy company: 92% success rate
Issue: Our energy client’s office-based population experienced an escalation in the number of injuries and illnesses, resulting in medical and disability costs and absenteeism.
Our solution: An ergonomics program to prevent repetitive motion injuries.
- First year: 74% success rate in addressing early signs and symptoms prior to escalation to medical.
- Currently: 92% success rate.
Auto manufacturing company: 98% success rate
Issue: Our automotive client was interested in a multi-factor program for 9,000 employees across three different facilities. The employee population experienced an increase in the number of injuries, resulting in increased OSHA recordables rates, absenteeism and short- and long-term disability.
Our solution: We implemented new programs including, new hire work conditioning, early intervention, self-care, pre-shift warm-up exercises, first-aid follow-up, and a 9-week exercise conditioning program.
Results: 98% success outcome (no OSHA recordables) of the 593 employees who entered the program over a 12 month period.
Cost avoidance: $8 million in cost avoidance. (Cost avoidance is determined by the number of participants multiplied by an average cost of an OSHA recordable from ergonomic injuries).
Contact us to learn more about injury prevention and treatment programs.
1. Bureau of Labor Statistics
2. Occupational Safety and Health Administration
About the author:
As Executive Director, Product Execution, Nicole is charged with leading the team that takes new products, services and product enhancements to market. She has been delivering employee wellness programs and solutions, both on-site and in a consultative role, for more than 20 years. She has served in several roles at HealthFitness, including program manager, fitness operations and regional director.