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Promoting Health in the Workplace: November 17, 2012

Along with all the things that go right in a productive workplace, occasionally things go wrong. Attending to health care needs on the job is what launched the field of occupational health.

“This field really began in the turn of the 19th century when there was some very heavy industry going on you had steel manufacturing, mining, some labor intensive industries. And companies had lots of accidents,” says Dr. Andrew Singh, occupational medicine with Lee Memorial Health System.

Nowadays, needs have grown and changed. And many companies outsource with health care providers, like Lee Memorial Health System, to cover services. From drug screenings, to physicals and wellness programs that encourage healthy living.

“We actually tailor a program to what each individual employer would like us to do.
For example, when flu season comes around, we can run an actual clinic onsite. The employees can get motivated to lose weight, to stop smoking, to control some of their medical issues,” says Dr. Singh.

It makes sense and saves dollars. Which is why businesses, large and small are investing in their workers wellbeing. Keeping employees healthy aligns with better attendance and lower insurance premiums.

Trends show workers comp claims are lower when attention is given to the surroundings.

“Being able to look at a workplace and say ‘oh this is a job that has actually a lot of inherent risk in it, what can we do to change that risk,” says Dr. Singh.

Promoting health in the workplace is a job in itself.