Humana study: Wellness program lowered costs, boosted productivity

A new study from Humana found that its wellness and rewards program helped the insurer's employees increase productivity and decrease healthcare utilization. For three years, the insurer tracked the progress of more than 8,000 of its employees who participated in the HumanaVitality program, through which they "create highly personal paths to health," according to an announcement. When participants achieve certain milestones, they are awarded points that they can redeem for rewards on retail items or as charitable donations.

The insurer found that compared to unengaged members, participants in the program had six fewer hours of unscheduled absences and experienced a 6 percent reduction in claims costs. They were also less likely to visit the hospital or emergency department. Study announcement