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How on-site and near-site employer clinics can improve employee morale

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Convenient access to primary care services in an on-site or near-site employer clinic has been shown to have many benefits for employees as well as for their organization as a whole. Employees who have the opportunity to take advantage of preventive care and immediate treatment for minor illnesses or injuries are physically healthier. Employers who offer on-site or near-site clinics as a benefit to their employees often realize lower absentee rates and higher production numbers.

On-site and near-site employer clinics can also improve morale among employees who actively use the services. Additional wellness benefits such as fitness centers or life management classes add to the benefits of the healthcare clinics. According to a recent survey of more than 1,200 full-time employees who work at companies with more than 3,000 employees, “providing a physical work environment that supports healthy decisions and participation in wellness programs (is) associated with reporting a positive work experience.”

The research, conducted by Optum, found that “employees who have access to 7–8 health and wellness program categories through their employers, compared to employees with no access to such programs, are:

  • 2.9X more likely to recommend their employer as a place to work
  • 1.5X more likely to continue working for their employer
  • 3.3X more likely to be proud to work for their employer

These numbers are indications of increased morale among the employees who actively engage in the employer-sponsored healthcare programs. Engagement is key to the results, and employees are more likely to engage in primary care services as well as health management programs such as weight loss or smoking cessation clinics that are convenient, either on-site or near-site.

The Optum study reports that “disengaged workers can be costly, both to the bottom line and to employee morale. In the United States, an estimated $450–$550 billion a year is lost to businesses due to less productive workers.” On-site and near-site employer clinics can help boost employee morale and significantly improve the bottom line for the employer.