A healthy reset has been a standard theme entering the new year, but it shouldn’t be the only time of year workplace wellness gets prioritized. What an individual’s weight says about their health status is an evolving discussion. So too is how employers support their workforce.

According to the International Foundation, 22% of United States employers cover prescription drugs for weight loss and almost half (45%) cover bariatric surgery (Employee Benefits Survey: 2022 Results). In addition, 32% of organizations offer weight management programs.

I spoke more about this topic with Julie Stich, the International Foundation’s VP of Content. She said that obesity is a complicated and often misunderstood disease, with treatments rapidly evolving.

More organizations understand that obesity is a disease that can cause heightened risk of other chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease and some cancers.

Providing coverage for advanced therapies and weight management programs can help reduce health care costs and vastly improve workers’ well-being.

In the U.S., 25% of employers report that obesity has the largest impact on overall health care costs (the International Foundation’s Workplace Wellness and Financial Education Programs: 2022 Results).

For more information and access to the full survey report, visit www.ifebp.org/ebs2022.

Anne Patterson
Associate Director of PR & Communications

The latest from Talking Benefits:

Anne Patterson

Marketing Communications Manager
Favorite Foundation Product: Foundation Community. It’s like LinkedIn but only for Foundation members. They can post questions, share best practices, etc—all with fellow members who also live and breathe employee benefits.
Benefits-related Topics That Interest Her Most: Workplace wellness (especially mental health), diversity, equity and inclusion, behavioral decision making, family-friendly benefits, payroll audits.
Personal Insight: When she’s not busy analyzing the inner workings of her toddler’s brain (does anyone actually know?!), Anne finds joy in home renovation and décor, haiku writing, watching Jeopardy, creating charcuterie boards, and bicycling.

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