3 Ways Diabetes May Be Affecting Your Company’s Bottom Line
This officially marks the end of National Diabetes Month, where companies, organizations, and communities team up to bring attention to diabetes and its impact on millions of Americans. With more than 100 million people in the US living with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes, the chances are high that you have employees with the disease.
Helping your employees with their type 2 diabetes management may ultimately save your company money in healthcare costs and reduce absenteeism. While coverage for diabetes is (most likely) included in your company health plan, the condition itself still has a significant impact on the workplace in terms of time, money, and resources. For example, diabetes in full-time workers costs employers up to $16 billion annually.
Let’s take a closer look at three areas where diabetes care and management among your employees who have the condition may be affecting your company’s bottom line:
Added healthcare costs. Spending on people with diabetes is estimated to be $16,000 per capita in annual healthcare costs for company-sponsored insured individuals with diabetes. This number is $10,000 higher than per capita spending for people without diabetes. The rise in spending is partially due to an increase in the number of ER visits and use of prescriptions among people with diabetes.
Employee absenteeism. Complications of poorly managed diabetes can contribute to employees with the disease taking more days away from their job. The reasons typically include doctor’s visits, possible hospitalizations, and specialist visits.
Poor quality output. Employees missing work due to diabetes-related care has an impact on all of your employees and workgroups. It can result in poor-quality goods and services caused by a number of factors, including: fatigue or understaffing, reduced productivity, excess manager time looking for employee replacements, hiring temp workers, and poor morale among employees who must perform extra work to cover for absent co-workers.
A recent Australian dataset linked diabetes with productivity losses, causing researchers to come to the conclusion that the condition could be costing the country billions of dollars. Researchers estimated a 10 percent decrease in productivity across the represented population.
While these numbers are not encouraging, they do provide motivation for companies to continue to find ways to help employees not only manage their type 2 diabetes, but help at-risk employees prevent onset. So take some time during National Diabetes Month to learn more about how Fitbit Care health coaching can help employees with type 2 diabetes management, or find some new ideas in our white paper, “The Impact of Diabetes on the Workplace.”