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The price is right: making workplace wellness financially sustainable

S. Lee (Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Nottingham, UK)
H. Blake (Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK)
S. Lloyd (NHS Stockton‐on‐Tees, Stockton‐on‐Tees, UK)

International Journal of Workplace Health Management

ISSN: 1753-8351

Article publication date: 30 March 2010

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1589

Abstract

Purpose

The public health argument for developing and maintaining workplace wellness programmes in organisations is well‐documented, particularly within the healthcare sector which aims to “set the example” for workplace health. However, workplace wellness also makes good business sense, since it is established that investing in employee health can reduce absenteeism, improve job satisfaction and productivity and enhance corporate image. Organisations often place workplace wellness low in their priorities. The purpose of this paper is to present the case for an initial resource investment and top‐level support to pump‐prime a financially sustainable, and even profitable, programme.

Design/methodology/approach

A discussion is presented based on academic literature and practical applications from the authors' experiences in practice.

Findings

The authors use their own in‐house scheme, “Q‐active” as a case example based in an NHS Trust setting, to demonstrate how such schemes can be developed and successfully implemented and maintained in practice. The paper presents the use of the Business Healthcheck Tool for developing a business case for such schemes.

Originality/value

Workplace wellness schemes are financially viable and can become a vital part of a large organisations' infrastructure embedded within policies and internal “health culture”.

Keywords

Citation

Lee, S., Blake, H. and Lloyd, S. (2010), "The price is right: making workplace wellness financially sustainable", International Journal of Workplace Health Management, Vol. 3 No. 1, pp. 58-69. https://doi.org/10.1108/17538351011031948

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited