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Family Healthcare Contributions Edge Closer to Full Month's Salary, Says Aon Consulting
Date:4/21/2008

Employers shift focus to wellness programs to reduce healthcare costs and

improve productivity

CHICAGO, April 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- While the median households in the United States earn approximately $48,000 annually(1), the amount these families spend on employer-sponsored health care per year continues to edge closer to one month's salary. Aon Consulting's 2008 Benefits and Talent Survey revealed that the median annual contribution for family healthcare coverage is $3,120, which is a 15 percent increase from 2007, and 22 percent increase from 2006 (see chart page 4). Meanwhile, organizations have experienced approximately 10 percent annual healthcare cost increases since 2006.

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Employers are beginning to move beyond this traditional cost shifting to cost control by focusing on improving the health and productivity of their employees. The survey of more than 1,100 U.S.-based organizations found that 64 percent of employers now have a benefits strategy that promotes the importance of health and productivity to their employees.

"By providing their workforce the tools and resources to improve their health, employers are making a commitment to invest in their employees, leading to a more productive workforce," said John Zern, Aon Consulting's U.S. Health & Benefits practice director. "This is a change from the traditional perspective of cutting medical program costs without regard to long-term impact or worker productivity."

Wellness programs

The most common way organizations today are promoting health and productivity is through wellness programs, which are primarily designed to prevent the development of chronic conditions (i.e., diabetes and heart disease). According to the survey, the amount of employers implementing specific wellness prog
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SOURCE Aon Corporation
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