Skip to comments.Firms dock pay of obese, smokers
Posted on 08/12/2007 10:47:36 PM PDT by melt
Companies seeking to cut rising health care costs are starting to dock the pay of overweight and unhealthy workers.
Clarian Health, an Indiana hospital chain, will require workers who smoke to pay $5 out of each paycheck starting in 2009. For workers deemed obese, as much as $30 will be taken out each paycheck until they meet certain weight, cholesterol and blood pressure standards.
Clarian employees will also be required to take part in a health risk appraisal that will inform the company which employees smoke.
Such appraisals are becoming a popular tool for businesses to determine the health of their work force. The type of health benefit program Clarian is setting up could become a model for businesses in coming years, analysts say.
"We anticipate that more employers will require employees to complete a health risk appraisal and participate in screenings," said Tracy Watts, a health benefits consultant for Mercer Human Resource Consulting. "We also are seeing more interest in rewards for healthy behaviors such as participating in health management-related programs and for healthy behaviors such as not using tobacco products."
A survey of nearly 3,000 employers last year by Mercer found that 53 percent required a health risk assessment of its workers. That number is up from 35 percent in 2004.
And 62 percent of the 135 top executives who responded to a PriceWaterhouseCooper's survey this year said their companies should require employees who show unhealthy behaviors to pay a greater share of their health care costs.
Weyco, a Lansing, Mich., benefits administrator, recently adopted a policy to completely eliminate tobacco use from its work force. In 2003, the company introduced a policy of not hiring tobacco users and began offering smoking-cessation programs to employees, who were given a year to quit.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtontimes.com ...
It's discrimination, man...
Just a guess but I would think someone will sue this company if they get docked for smoking or being fat. This IS discrimination at it's finest.
What about politically correct groups who define themselves by their unhealthy behaviors? Crickets chirping...
What about all those fat liberals in birkenstocks that don’t work????
>>>What about politically correct groups who define themselves by their unhealthy behaviors? Crickets chirping...<<<
Thinkin’ Gal has indeed been thinking...
are they going to be docked?...
what about alcoholics?...what about people that pop pain pills constantly?...what about people that are promiscuous?....should we be checking their shorts?
Anyone with those factors will be SOL.
We give them a PARADE!
What about people who sleep around?
Yes. Hysterectomies and AIDs cases are expensive enough.
I have no love for trial lawyers, but I would sue a firm in a New York minute if they tried to dock my wages for this!
I suppose that soon they will be checking your DNA to see if you have cancer based genes or diabetes genes .. and charge you more based on your *potential* risk. Some people could become uninsurable and unemployable for nothing more than their genetic code.
So what do we do about it? I know .. we pass some laws protecting lousy genes. You think we should grant them minority status? What do I say? keep your laws off my jeans!! hehe
Sorry folks .. it's late and I'm getting giddy.
Watch for this in the future because this will become a trend among businesses. Bottom line they are pushing for a nationalized health care system with their employees clamoring for it. Smokers, fat people, it isn’t going to end with these groups.
Sounds like the perfect situation for an employer. Make the job as stressful as possible, then dock the worker when his blood pressure goes up.
I bet the looney lefties, that are outraged by government eavesdropping on foreigners, are perfectly accepting of this outrage.
Interesting. Obese people could have 6 times the amount withheld. Funny, I don't remember hearing about the "evils" of being obese on the MSM.
A national tax on potato chips, I say...
My company, a Fortune 500, has a surcharge in place already for workers who use tobacco. It costs an extra $30 a month for health insurance so it doesn't look like a dock, but they already are docking pay in many companies for tobacco. We had a health risk assessment this year that was voluntary and tied to a slight discount. Talk is, it'll be mandatory within two years. So far, no lawsuits, and I don't think we'll see one soon.
The real solution is take away the tax break for employer provided health insurance and let the employees take care of their own insurance/health care needs.
Health insurance through an employer has seriously distorted the entire health care industry which all came about because it isn’t taxed. A self employed person has to pay tax on their health insurance. Level the playing field and get employers out of the health care business.
What a total joke!
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