Career Calling

February 28, 2013

What’s Wrong with Corporate Wellness Programs

Steve Early has a great article in the Nation that examines corporate wellness programs.  The programs sound good on the surface since they promote, as Early puts it, “a social good.”  The deeper problem is about employer’s motives and the real impact of the program.  Employees who don’t comply with the program will face higher payments for healthcare if they fail to meet standards set by the employer.  Is the real purpose of such programs better health for working people or a shift of health care costs from employer to employee?  Given how the wage game has been going for the past few decades, it’s not too cynical to say that employers’ first concern isn’t the employees’ health.  It’s a stealth and selective salary cut, another way to push money up and pain down.

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