Employers are adopting new health care policies in the face of rising health care cost in order to keep workers healthy. “With health care costs rising in 2012 to $12,136 per employee on average, according to a recent study, companies argue that the new policies not only help cut costs, but also contribute to the overall well being of their workforces.”
The Wall Street Journal reports that workers at the tire manufacturing company Michelin could miss out on lowering their deductibles by up to $1,000 if they were to show unhealthy signs, such as high blood pressure or waists lines over 40 inches. To reduce rising health care cost companies like Walmart and Home Depot have created similiar policies, but this requires employess to share personal health information and is looked at as an invasion of privacy and being unfair. Michelin reports to The Huffington Post that The Wall Street Journa’s claim against the policy is not accurate. Michelin states that the company is not penalizing their workers for showing signs of obesity, but is instead rewarding workers who meet the three of five health standards, such as waist size, blood pressure and cholesterol.
Although the new health care policies may be unfair and an invasion of privacy, it may also promote workers to obtain a healthier lifestyle. I do believe that this could actually help the employees. Companies however should not penalize their employees because they are not healthy, but they should definitely award them if they achieve a healthy state. This way they both win because they lower the cost and the employees get to live a healthy life like everyone should. People just need a little push from someone to begin caring about themselves, and if companies award them for it, it might be just the push that they need.