Funding Opportunity: Workplace Wellness Initiative

The Indiana State Department of Health Cancer Control section just released a funding opportunity to help develop a pilot program for cancer screening initiatives in the workplace. Cancer screening is critical — early detection not only increases the effectiveness of treatment, but also long-term survival rates. And, often the workplace is seen as the new frontier in health initiatives. But why? What can the workplace gain by promoting cancer screenings?

In March 2008, 63 percent of the non-institutionalized adult population, approximately 145,969,000 adults, in the U.S. was employed – this means that a bulk of the average-risk population for breast, cervical, or colorectal cancer screening could be found at work. For every employee without cancer, employers spend an average of $3,000 per year in direct medical costs. For employees with cancer, that number jumps to $16,000 per year in direct medical costs.

About 2.4 million Hoosiers, or two out of every five, will eventually develop cancer. This means that for a company that employs 100 people, 40 will develop cancer. That means for the 40 people who develop cancer the employer will spend $640,000 in direct medical costs, as opposed to the $180,000 in medical costs for the 60 healthy employees. Just in terms of dollars and cents, it makes sense to develop programs that encourage employees to participate in screenings that detect cancer early – sometimes before it is even considered cancer.

Wellness programs and initiatives in the workplace benefit the employers with a decrease in lost productivity and healthier bottom lines – but more importantly, workplace wellness and cancer screening programs save lives.

View the application for this funding opportunity.

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