Preventive measures can help U.S. workforce, save billions
By Michael Giardina
As business leaders and government officials cope with surging health care costs, one global think tank is estimating that up to $303 billion can be saved through a healthier workforce should chronic disease prevention efforts in the workplace become the norm.
According to research from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the U.S. is spending about $2.7 trillion annually on health care, but these dollars are usually focused on treating disease and injury after they happen. The foundation says that seven out of 10 deaths in the U.S. are caused by chronic conditions such as heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes.
According to Derek Yach, executive director of the Vitality Institute, the research arm of wellness vendor Vitality Group, only 2% of corporate dollars spent on health care are for prevention and only 3% of federal dollars are directed to this cause.
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