'Unsick Day:' How one digital health platform is pushing preventive healthcare
- This week, digital health platform Zocdoc announced that its employees would now have access to an "Unsick Day," a PTO day dedicated to preventive care doctor appointment. It's encouraging other employers to do the same.
- Zocdoc's survey results released alongside the announcement reveal that a majority of U.S. workers (60%) "feel uncomfortable leaving work for preventive care appointments," with at least half saying that their employer culture didn't allow them to make these appointments.
- The announcement comes as more employers are considering ways to improve holistic employee wellness and decrease healthcare spending.
The survey results — as well as the new PTO day dedicated specifically for preventive care — reflect the troubles employers may have in getting employees to use their provided health dollars. Wellness programs are supposed to bring healthcare savings in the long run, but engagement continues to be a struggle, largely because the company's culture may not align with wellness goals.
The rise of high deductible health plans paradoxically add to the conundrum. While HDHPs cost less in premiums, paying full-cost for a doctor's visit deters some (especially millennials) from visiting the doctor when needed. If preventive care is a more obvious and accepted part of a work culture, that could help in ensuring employees visit the doctor when needed, preventing further problems — and larger costs — down the road.
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