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Today, health and well-being programmes are no longer limited to the annual flu vaccination and sports game. Nowadays, more employers are offering a broader range of programmes, from allowing time for exercise, providing on-site eating areas, to hosting health education talks and coaching. However, the 2017 Cigna 360° Well-being Survey revealed that there are still gaps to be filled.
Despite more than half (52%) of the 14,219 respondents considering a GP’s consultation fees as basic health coverage, only 34% of them reported that it is included in their employee package – an 18% gap. The survey also found that there was a 16% gap for hospitalisation benefits as well as an 8% gap for health check-ups, all of which were considered basic benefits by employees.
Perhaps due to the lack of coverage, the survey also revealed that overall only a third of respondents saw a doctor or dentist when feeling ill. Zooming in on the different countries surveyed, the highest figures were from Korea (49%), Taiwan (43%), Hong Kong (41%), India (41%) and Singapore (41%).
Employees seemed to prefer trying self-remedies first with 33% of taking over the counter drugs based on self-diagnoses; particularly in Indonesia (97%), UK (97%), China (95%) and New Zealand (95%).
The survey also pointed out that 20% have not had any health checks in the last year.
Interestingly, 37% of respondents have had a dental exam, more than any other type of medical check-up in the last year. However, the survey also pointed out that only a fifth (19%) currently have dental benefits covered by their employer.
At the same time, the survey found that while workplace wellness ranked low on the priority list when looking for a new job, 66% felt that it was important for their current employer to have a workplace wellness program in place. More than half (59%) said that the presence of a workplace wellness programme would impact their decision on whether to join a new employer.
Never growing old
Another interesting finding was that old age is based on perception, with the perception of old age rising as people age themselves.
While 18-29 year-olds considered 60 as old, 60-year olds considered 74 as old.
The perception of old age also varied based on nationality.
While on average, respondents considered 66 years as old, those in New Zealand said 72 years was old, while those in Hong Kong considered 68 years as old, and those in Singapore said 64 years was old.
The survey found that respondents would like to keep working to feel young and active.
A desire to stay mentally and physically active through work post-retirement was named by 68% as a reason to stay employed.
Even without pay, there was a desire to stay involved beyond retirement age; this mindset increases with age and involvement often includes volunteerism. About a fifth (23%) planned to volunteer after retirement with the highest rates in India (31%) and Singapore (28%).
Lead photo / 123RF
Infographic / Cigna