By 2050, the number of people over 65 years old will triple and the number of those over 80 will quadruple. But healthy life expectancy is shorter than total life expectancy. Simply by living longer, people are likely to experience more illnesses, and increasing health care costs. Is your organisation ready to deal with the challenges and opportunities of an ageing workforce.
Health and productivity are closely linked. Employers often lack knowledge about the health needs of their workforce and don’t manage the associated business risk. But targeted interventions and monitoring the outcomes of health programmes can help ensure quick reaction and informed decision-making to maximize employee productivity.
The solution? Using tools like a health risk assessment can arm employees with information on their health status and lifestyle, irrespective of current health. Employers can also use the aggregate data of insured and uninsured health benefits to develop future health and wellbeing strategies as well as producing a meaningful dashboard of management information to understand the state of play. The aim should be to minimize reactive spending and maximize proactive spending on healthcare.
Older people suffer from more chronic conditions, which may lead to prolonged absences. Although not all absences are age-related, employers’ absence costs can far outweigh preventative health care costs.
The solutions? Proactive companies are exploring ways to help mitigate this, using data analytics, health pathways, disease management, and return-to-work programmes, along with preventative measures, such as health risk assessments and behaviour change interventions.
Stress, anxiety, and depression are now the most common reasons for long-term sickness absence from work. In the UK, men and women aged 45 to 54 have the highest incidence of stress. Effective stress management and resilience training can reduce sickness absence and presenteeism while increasing productivity and employee engagement.
The solution? Managers play a critical role in creating a healthy work environment. Adjusting the demands of the job to the skills and capability of the employee, giving workers greater control over their work flow, and family-friendly and flexible shift patterns can all help individuals and teams become more resilient.
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