Church sees big returns from using HeartMath system
Monday, 25 April 2011 16:00employee wellness and reduce workplace stress. When the church hired a consulting company to gauge how well the intervention worked, they found significant results.
Implementation of the program cost an estimated $300 per employee, but when savings from healthcare costs were measured, it was found that workers who participated in the program saved the company nearly $600 per month.
To conduct the research, McCarthy Actuarial Consulting analyzed the healthcare and prescription cost data of 486 employees, of whom 143 participated in the Revitalize You program. About 80 percent of the cohorts were male, with an average age of about 50.
Between 2007 and 2008, it was found that those who engaged in the HeartMath system had an average decrease of 11.5 percent in healthcare costs, compared to a 14 percent increase for non-participators. Additionally, pharmacy costs for the participants rose by 4.7 percent, while abstainers saw a 15.4 percent rise in pharmaceutical expenditures.
These numbers added up to an average savings of 7.1 percent for participators, and a 14.4 percent hike in costs for those who chose not to use Revitalize You.
The consulting company predicted that future savings stemming from the HeartMath program may include further reduced pharmaceutical costs and continued healthcare expenditure savings for the participating employees.
Research on the link between stress and emotions has been extensive and suggests that individuals do have the power to control their mental anguish using simple techniques. The Revitalize You program works by reinforcing positive feedback between the heart and the mind using technology integrated with HeartMath techniques. By helping to synchronize breathing with heart rate, the system is able to allow users to calm themselves, which may prompt the body to release hormones that are linked with positive emotions.
HeartMath's main purpose is to relieve stress, and given the compendium of human illness related to chronic anxiety and tension, it's reasonable to believe that the program inherently promotes healthcare cost savings for both the employer and employee. Additionally, estimates from the McCarthy analysis report that absenteeism stemming from poor health makes up for about half of health-related costs, while presenteeism - or low productivity due to illness - can cost anywhere from $22 to $157 per employee annually.
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