Masters Thesis

Health and wellness programs: improving the quality and overall function of an organization

Poor health costs the United States economy over half a trillion dollars a year, and a substantial percentage is from absenteeism due to illness or from employees coming to work but not performing their best. Health complaints in the workforce are associated with job stress more so than with financial or family problems. Physical, mental, and emotional states of employees affect their performance, impacting the whole organization. Employee health and wellness programs have increased in popularity in the United States in response to an awareness of these correlations. This thesis focuses on improvements employers can make in implementing a health and wellness program to improve health, reduce absenteeism, and minimize job stress. Deming’s Plan-Do-Study-Act theoretical framework is utilized to analyze data from 18 organizations offering health and wellness programs. Employers realize that offering a health and wellness program promotes better employee performance and overall quality in the organization.