4 Key Wellness Trends by WebMD Health Services CEO, Mark Emkjer

Posted: August 28, 2013 in Uncategorized
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There are several trends to monitor closely when working with organizations in the areas of health and wellness. Patterns emerge from data that can steer organizations’ priorities when it comes to their population’s health; paying attention to these patterns is what will ensure success for both the organization and the people who rely on them. According to Mark Emkjer, there are four of these wellness trends that are particularly important for the ever-changing realm of population health management. Here is what he recommends focusing on:

  1. Incentives – Recent health reform has changed incentives for programs that reach specific health outcome goals. The government has finalized regulations on the highest amount of rewards that employers can give starting in 2014 based on wellness programs. The maximum reward has been raised to 30 percent of the total cost of coverage for health-dependent wellness programs and 50 percent for programs targeting smoking cessation.
  2. Transparency – The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will make a few routine services for preventative care mandatory. Because of this, patients need to be more aware of the pricing of the procedures before hand to make a true informed decision. Wellness should include education and information along with quality of health.
  3. Condition Management – About 15 percent of the population that is currently employed has or will have a chronic condition. This section will produce 75-80 percent of the health care costs, according to WebMD Health Service’s data.
  4. ROI – Return on Investment is very important, even to wellness based businesses. Two types of ROI’s are emerging: claims based and risk based assessments. This is taking place of just basing success on participation rates.

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