A significant concern among employers is the health and well-being of their employees – and how to pay for these benefits and needs. With insurance rates continuously rising, cost effectiveness is a major focus. Many companies have established on-site clinics where employees can receive medical services more conveniently.
On-site clinics tend to focus on prevention and early intervention. The convenience of being on-site makes it easier for employees to simply stop by on a break or before going home at the start of a symptom or pain, rather than having to leave work and go to a separate location. Another positive is that receiving treatment earlier in the progression of a condition often allows for more efficient and effective treatment.
As employees become familiar with their on-site providers and build trust, it creates an open door for communication that may lead to discussions on long term wellness concerns, such as weight control, smoking cessation and other issues. Because the health care providers are on-site, they can actually see and better understand what specific tasks employees are performing. They can then make recommendations regarding proper ergonomics for specific stations and tasks, as well as familiarize themselves with what is available for light duty when a patient needs accommodations.
The size and services offered at on-site clinics vary greatly from company to company. Some provide limited services on a part-time schedule while others offer a range of services and may be open daily. WorkSiteRight is an example of one on-site clinic model where employees gain access to chiropractic care, acupuncture, massage therapy, and connections to other health care services as needed. Chad Henriksen, DC is the director of the WorksiteRight program at Northwestern Health Sciences University in Bloomington, Minnesota.
Dr. Henriksen reports that in a recent study, they found “that for every dollar invested in onsite health care, employers saved more than $8. They also experienced a 67% drop in workers’ compensation costs and a 63% decrease in sprain and strain injuries.” Additionally, the employers reported that while approximately 60% of their staff utilized the on-site clinics, there was “no negative effects on productivity.” In fact, morale was significantly higher and their ability to attract and retain talent improved.
In 2012, a study was published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine showing benefits for offering chiropractic care at an on-site health center. Researchers performed a retrospective claims analysis as well as clinical evaluations to determine what impact on-site chiropractic care had on utilization and outcomes of their employee health care. They reported that employees treated in on-site clinics had significantly LOWER average “total number of health care visits, radiology procedures, and musculoskeletal medication use per patient with each event.” At the same time, on-site patients experienced significant improvements in functional status associated with headache, neck pain and low back pain.
Recently, the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress interviewed several chiropractors who have experience working in integrative, hospital and corporate settings. Here are a few of their comments:
“Chiropractic is fast becoming the most cost-effective option for better long term outcomes and avoiding unnecessary invasive treatments, imaging, and pain medication.”
Daniel Lord, DC, CCSP
“I have been practicing in an integrative heath care setting for the better half of the last two decades …. the last six of which I have worked at an outpatient clinic owned by an academic medical center in Illinois. At the clinic, most of the other providers that I work alongside are primary care physicians (PCP), which works out great. Our team balances each other out and we have found that by putting our heads together, we are able to develop the best care plan for our patients.”
David W. Flatt, DC, DABCO, Board Certified Chiropractic Orthopedist
“I am employed by a hospital based chiropractic clinic, which is part of a 15 location franchise …. Placing heavy focus on the diagnosis and management of conditions associated with the musculoskeletal system, we have been able to restore the health of patients who initially visited our clinic with little hope of feeling better. Not only have we witnessed improved outcomes and notable cost savings, but the positive patient testimonials continue to catapult the value of chiropractic care into the public eye.”
Darrin Larremore, DC
“I have been credentialed in five hospitals over my 33-year career, including Bethesda Naval and Walter Reed Medical Centers. During my time working in an integrated environment, I have certainly seen the value of chiropractic in drug-free treatment of a variety of clinical presentations, ranging from limb salvage, to blast injury patients, amputees, behavioral health patients, chronic pain patients, and of course those with spinal ailments. The model in which chiropractic is most revered is one in which cost savings is the goal. Chiropractic provides affordable care with a great cost benefit ratio.”
William E. Morgan, DC, DAAPM, FICC, FIM, FPAC, LLD (hc)
With soaring health care costs, more and more companies are finding it makes sense to explore options that are “outside of the box” of the traditional medical care model. Bringing health care on-site and having multiple specialties working together for the benefit of the patient are simple ways that employers can provide cost-effective benefits for their employees.
If you have access to an onsite health clinic, ask about all of the services offered. If chiropractic care is not currently available, request that it be added. Working together, we can help each other achieve better health and wellness.
If you do not have an on-site clinic, talk to your chiropractor about the physical demands of your job. Some employers have allowed health care providers to tour the facility to better see and understand employee’s jobs so they can provide better treatment and injury prevention plans. If you don’t have a doctor of chiropractic, you can find a TCA Member doctor HERE.
“You Heard it Here First: DCs Talk Integrative Care”. F4CP April 2018 Newsletter
Krause, CA; Kaspin, L; Gorman, KM; Miller, RM. “Value of Chiropractic Services at an On-Site Health Center”. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. August 2012, Volume 54, Issue 8, p 917–921. doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e31825a3507
“Onsite health care initiatives help employees”. Chiropractic Economics. August 6, 2018.