Denver, CO – Pinnacol Assurance, the first workers’ compensation insurance company in the nation to offer wellness services to its policyholders, is now broadening its health and wellness footprint by offering worksite wellness to all policyholders. The program is free of charge and comes with access to community health resources and new coordination arrangements with health plans – starting with Aetna – and health care providers to coordinate care. This portfolio of services will help us take better care of our policyholders’ employees before, during and after an injury.
The linchpin of our health and wellness initiative is Pinnacol’s worksite wellness program. Previously available only to a subset of Pinnacol’s policyholders, it is now available to all policyholders at no cost. Research conducted on the program by the Colorado School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University and Truven Health Analytics shows a definitive link between employee health and the frequency and severity of workplace injuries, with a 2:1 return on investment.
Our wellness resources now also include free access to community organizations that can offer employees even more support, such as Colorado QuitLine’s smoking cessation resources and the Carson J. Spencer Foundation’s suicide prevention programs. And, we’re connecting policyholders with the Colorado School of Public Health’s Health Links Program, which offers on-site support to help companies reach established wellness and safety benchmarks. They can also qualify for healthy business certifications, demonstrating their commitment to the wellbeing of their employees.
Although these programs are designed to minimize the potential for workplace injuries, they also support the care we provide to injured employees. The research conducted on our worksite wellness program has helped us identify health risk factors with the greatest impact on workplace injuries. That will help our nurse care managers identify injured employees who need extra care and support.
Finally, through our partnership with Aetna, we will be able to coordinate care for injured employees, creating a “warm handoff” between our team and the employee’s other providers. For example, after an injury occurs, and with the employee’s permission, a nurse care manager at Pinnacol can request the Aetna nurse care manager’s notes, helping coordinate the patient’s care and ensure they get the right treatment and services. Following recovery, Pinnacol will contact Aetna to smoothly transition the employee’s care to his or her primary physician. We anticipate future, similar partnerships with other health plans and provider groups that will improve transitions between care settings.
“Our focus on health and wellness is a natural extension of our core mission,” said Karyn Gonzales, vice president of medical operations and healthcare strategy. “The ultimate goal is to help Colorado employees stay healthy, reduce the frequency and severity of their injuries, better manage their care when they are injured, and get them back to work as quickly and safely as possible.”