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Rigorous new study of employee wellness programs suggests they may not be very effective

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A rigorous new study of workplace wellness programs suggests that they may not be as effective as employers hope, at least in the short term. Employees assigned to receive wellness training did become more conscious of diet and exercise but didn’t score better on various health measures or spend less on healthcare.

The 80 percent of large US employers that offer workplace wellness programs hope that the benefit will be a win-win situation. The programs (which usually includes health assessments and info sessions) are supposed to help employees stay healthier, which would also lower their healthcare costs, saving money for the company. In a study published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers studied the…

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