The Institute for Health and Productivity Management (IHPM) and the Work Place Wellness Alliance (WPWA) published the results of a survey they did with 35 employers with a total of 1.2 million workers in a paper entitled “The case for Self-Care and Over-the-Counter medicines; value-add to healthcare and productivity for employees and employers”. IHPM found that self-treatable ailments such as allergies, muscle and joint pain and gastric reflux affect many employees every work day of the year, interfering seriously with their productivity (Health and Productivity Management, vol.1,n.3). The paper cites the US Booz and Co. study (see our News item of January 2012) to illustrate that ready access to OTC medicines for self-treatment of a number of prevalent conditions such as cold and flu, heartburn and acid reflux disease (GERD), allergies and pain, enables sufferers to relieve symptoms quickly and safely to restore their functional ability while producing large financial savings. The paper concludes that, while Self-Care is gaining acceptance in Europe and the US in part supported by global trends such as the “democratization” of healthcare information or the “retailization” of medical services to non-medical settings, OTC medicines are an underutilized resource and there is a need to support OTC access. IHPM WPWA is a non-profit enterprise devoted to establishing the value of employee health as a global business asset.
Download the paper: IHPM_theCaseForSelf-Care_Nov2015