More and more of the larger companies are introducing corporate wellness schemes. But are employees taking full advantage of this benefit?
The move may be motivated more by increasing productivity than by altruism, but that shouldn't put people off says the chief executive officer of Proactive Health Solutions, Dr Fundle Nyathi.
He notes that medical aids tend to deal with reactive medicine whereas in-house health programmes focus on prevention.
What has been found, it's even better to have preventative programmes at the workplace, so the chances of people getting sick are actually reduced.— Dr Fundile Nyathi, CEO - Proactive Health Solutions
It also helps you to stretch the benefits of your own medical aid if there are things you can test without having to pay, it makes a lot of sense.— Dr Fundile Nyathi, CEO - Proactive Health Solutions
Why is it then that some employees are wary of taking part?
Dr Nyathi says this can be attributed to fears that a company's Human Resources (HR) department could use any condition an employee might have against them, for instance during a round of retrenchments.
But, according to the doctor, confidentiality is normally part of the package.
There's a lot of under-utilisation of these programmes, yet the benefits are quite big for employees and their immediate family members.— Dr Fundile Nyathi, CEO - Proactive Health Solutions
Most of these programmes make use of third-party organisations from the outside. Those organisations don't have any interaction on a day-to-day basis with HR and even when they do give reports, they just give statistics, they don't give individual people's information.— Dr Fundile Nyathi, CEO - Proactive Health Solutions
Dr Nyathi feels as the companies concerned invest a lot in these programmes, it's a question of marketing them better to employees.
Listen to the complete conversation below: