Chiropractic Workplace Wellness Programs
Doctors and healthcare professionals are in serious deliberations about the cost value of chiropractic care. The main point of debate is whether chiropractic care helps to reduce or adds to the cumulative cost of care. Recent studies suggest that chiropractic care not only reduces the cost of immediate care, but also reduces the cost during subsequent bouts of ailment, such as in the case of low back pain. Musculoskeletal problems cause heavy financial burden that requires expensive tests in order to identify the root problem, but research shows chiropractic care offered at on-site health center helps to reduce economic burden associated with them.
A study carried out compared on-site chiropractic care versus off-site physical therapy; the study established the fact that on-site chiropractic care helped to lower the use of health care services while also improving the musculoskeletal function.
The study methodology included a retrospective claims analysis along with clinical evaluation to judge the effectiveness of on-site chiropractic services on health care utilization and the associated outcomes.
What do studies reveal?
There have been many studies previously that demonstrate the effectiveness of chiropractic care, but the present study is the only one to evaluate its effectiveness when offered on site. The study revealed that when patients were provided on-site chiropractic care, it lowered utilization of certain healthcare services and also improved the functionality of the musculoskeletal conditions.
Patients receiving chiropractic services on-site experienced the following benefits in comparison to off-site patients:
- Less visits to the physical thisapist
- Less visits to the physician
- Less outpatient visits
- Lowered total healthcare visits and medication use
- Significant decrease in OBQL, HADI and NPDI scores. Such functional improvements help individuals to perform work- related activities. Improved functional status ensure reduced indirect costs such as absenteeism and lesser productivity.
According to a study by Metz et al in 2004, patients with and without healthcare plans with chiropractic coverage, opted for chiropractic care instead of medical care whenever possible. Lowered health care utilization amongst the on-site group is also related to the characteristics of chiropractic care which is less invasive and is a conservative approach. Patients with chiropractic coverage avoid hospitalization, surgeries and various imaging procedures.
Similarly, in a study by Phlen et al. in 2004, it was observed that patients under chiropractic care had reduced utilization of ancillary medical services. The study involved associates who had access to on- site chiropractic care. It showed that this group of associates had lowered outpatient visits. The study also showed that patients who received chiropractic care for musculoskeletal pain lost fewer work days and required lower workers’ compensation as compared to those who received medical care.
Due to less utilization of costly healthcare services, for those who had coverage for chiropractic care, total annual medical costs were lowered by 12%, clearly demonstrating the effectiveness of chiropractic care versus medical care.
The Bottom Line
To summarize, the study clearly shows that on-site chiropractor services have high value and offer great advantage not only to the employee but also to the employer. By offering integrative, evidence-based convenient care, on-site chiropractic services result in lower utilization of costly health care services and also causes better functional outcomes.
If you’re a Milwaukee-area employer, at Ascent Chiropractic we can show you how to lower both your company’s medical insurance and liability costs. We’ll work with you to integrate a quality chiropractic wellness program to reduce health costs and improve worker’s comp release and return to work rates, saving you substantial time and resources.
Our experience in working with southeastern Wisconsin companies and organizations to enhance wellness programs has proven that there is no off-the-shelf program that works for everyone. We develop each program by carefully assessing the environmental, social and organizational influences of your workplace and create a customized program to achieve your specific objectives.